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Pima County supervisor’s consider raising minimum wage to match Tucson

Posted at 5:58 PM, Nov 16, 2021

TUCSON, Ariz. (KGUN) — Discussion at the Pima County Board of Supervisor’s meeting Monday, included matching the minimum wage hike the City of Tucson passed November 2.

The City of Tucson voted to raise the minimum wage to $15 by 2025. In April, Tucson workers will see a $13 minimum wage. Currently, the minimum wage in Pima County is 12.15 and will rise to 12.80 in January.

"I do think that we really should come up with a regional approach on how to accomplish this for our county,” said Supervisor Adelita Grijalva, district 5.

Supervisor Grijalva presented the item to the board. Most other colleagues agreed there should be a spike in the minimum wage, but they disagreed and on who should make the decision.

“I voted for the state ballot measures to increase the minimum wage and I endorsed the recent Tucson ballot measure,” said Supervisor Rex Scott, district 1.“If we are going to be the only one of 14 Arizona counties to take this step. There needs to be a robust public debate. There needs to be a lot of discussion and there needs to be a public vote,”

A spike is something the Pima County Small Business Commission is against.

In a letter to Chairperson Sharon Bronson, the commission explained it would result in negative consequences like making the county less competitive to do business with and potentially decreasing staff hours leading to reduced earnings for workers.

Pima County Small Business Commission

While minimum wage will remain in the county, Supervisor Grijalva said she thinks all stakeholder involved, including those who want to raise to issue to the local chamber of commerce, need to come together.

"If you challenge our community to come up with an initiative, there will be an initiative. It might not be anything that any of us like. And so that to me is sort of like - it gives us an opportunity to do it better than maybe what was done and address a lot of the concerns that business owners have,” said Supervisor Grijalva.