Seattle Eateries Closing as $15 Minimum Wage Approaches

Last summer we talked about the rather faint hopes that some Seattle businesses were clinging to as the city moved toward jacking up their minimum wage (for some jobs) to $15.00 per hour. Employers – particularly in the restaurant industry – were asking the city council to reconsider as they evaluated their options in the face of labor costs which were about to rise to between 42 and 47 percent of their operating expenses. It all fell on deaf ears, unfortunately, and the plan is moving forward. And rather than waiting for the roof to come crashing down, some owners are preemptively closing their doors.

Seattle’s $15 minimum wage law goes into effect on April 1, 2015. As that date approaches, restaurants across the city are making the financial decision to close shop. The Washington Policy Center writes that “closings have occurred across the city, from Grub in the upscale Queen Anne Hill neighborhood, to Little Uncle in gritty Pioneer Square, to the Boat Street Cafe on Western Avenue near the waterfront.”

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