TUCSON, Ariz. (KGUN) — Many City of Tucson employees will soon see a bigger paycheck. City council voted unanimously to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour for their workers last night.
The city says about 170 workers making less than $15 an hour will see a bump in pay and 2,000 workers who already make around that amount will get some kind of increase to avoid compression issues.
Mayor Regina Romero says she has been pushing for this for three years.
“I’m very happy we were able to be steady on this and really make it happen for working families,” she said.
Romero says the vote was to give city employees a living wage and also to help with the city’s recruitment and retention.
“If you are not competitive with your wages you have a revolving door, that was happening to Tucson for a few years now,” SHE SAID.
We asked Romero what the increase would cost the city. She didn’t have a specific number but said the city has the money for it in general and special funds.
“There is going to be no request for any additional sales taxes or anything else," she said. "We are doing this with the funds we currently get from taxpayers."
While many find the raising of the minimum wage controversial, The Tucson mayor says it is a win for her employees and a way to boost the local economy.
“It’s good for the pocketbooks for the city workers, it makes sense for the city of Tucson, and it really is something good for the community,” Romero said.