SF small businesses support minimum wage increase, survey finds 

A majority of small businesses in a recent informal survey said they would support a hike in The City’s minimum wage, according to Scott Hauge, vice president of CAL Insurance and Associates Inc., who sent out the questionnaire.

Of the 40 businesses that responded, 20 said they would back a hike in the minimum wage while 16 said they oppose the idea. The rest had no position.

Most of the businesses that supported a hike said a $12 minimum wage is something they could get behind.

“I would say, however, if it went to $15, that clearly would have an effect,” Hauge said.

The survey came about because Mayor Ed Lee in recent months has said that San Francisco’s minimum wage, already one of the highest in the nation at $10.74 an hour, is not enough to live on here. He also indicated in his State of the City speech earlier this month that he plans to put a wage increase on November’s ballot. What dollar amount it will be is unknown.

Most of those queried in Hauge’s survey said the change would not impact their businesses.

Despite arguments on both sides of the issue on what an increased minimum wage would do to local small businesses, Hauge said, “I don’t think, to my knowledge, there’s any definitive argument any way or the other on it.”

Meanwhile, a $15-per-hour figure is getting traction in some circles. The influential San Francisco Labor Council recently called for such a wage minimum.

About The Author

Jonah Owen Lamb

Jonah Owen Lamb

Born and raised on a houseboat in Sausalito, Lamb has written for newspapers in New York City, Utah and the San Joaquin Valley. He was most recently an editor at the San Luis Obispo Tribune for nearly three years. He has written for The S.F. Examiner since 2013 and covers criminal justice and planning.
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