The minimum wage in the state of Iowa is $7.25 per hour.
Thinking they could falsely inflate prosperity, the all-Democrat Johnson County Board of Supervisors forced a minimum wage hike on Johnson County businesses back in 2015.
The Johnson County government mandated wage hike was implemented in three phases, to $8.20/hr on November 1, 2015, to $9.15/hr on May 1, 2016 and to $10.10/hr on January 1, 2017.
So how has that arrogant-county-government-knows-better-than-the-free-market thinking fared?
What was the average monthly unemployment rate in Johnson County year ending 2015, to include Phase 1 of the forced wage hike being implemented you ask? Remember that the area economy is propped up by the state tax dollar driven University of Iowa, the area's largest employer.
And the average monthly unemployment rate for the state?
What was the average monthly unemployment rate in Johnson County year ending 2016, with the Phase 2 forced wage hike implemented?
Hmmmm, the rate in the county went up.
And for the state?
Hmmmm, the rate in the state went up yes, but at the very same percentage as Johnson County..... That's interesting, because supervisors PROMISED the county's unemployment rate would IMPROVE, as in, not go up, with a higher minimum wage in affect! Johnson County would fare better than the rest of the state paying just $7.75/hr we were told. That, flat out, didn't happen.
What was the average monthly unemployment rate in Johnson County year ending 2017, with Phase 3 implemented?
State statistics for December from Iowa Workforce Development aren't out yet, so numbers for the year and a monthly unemployment rate average are not yet available.
So with those numbers pending, the following questions need to be asked and answered:
What about business closures in the area, what do those numbers look like? What about business start-ups, how do those numbers look and how do business closures/start-ups in Johnson County compare to state numbers since Johnson County government forced their wage hikes?
Have people gotten 'richer' as supervisors promised?
What about the prices for products and services? Have they gone up as well, negating the forced minimum wage hikes?
And what about the costs to area businesses, the cost of government in implementing the wage hike mandates? Should the all-Democrat Johnson County Board of Supervisor have left well enough alone?
This story is developing, stay tuned.....
Related: Cost of Living, Johnson County
Related: Cost of Living, Linn County
Related: Cost of Living, State of Iowa