Unanimous Approval for Mayor Levine’s Minimum Living Wage Ordinance
– Miami Beach passes ordinance establishing first city-wide minimum living wage–
Miami Beach, FL: The Miami Beach City Commission unanimously approved an ordinance, which was originally proposed by Mayor Philip Levine and co-sponsored by all six city commissioners. Miami Beach becomes the first city in Florida to establish a city-wide minimum living wage with a phased in approach.
“Miami Beach is known world-wide for taking on its challenges with meaningful solutions,” said Miami Beach Mayor Philip Levine. “Today, my colleagues joined me in passing legislation that addresses the growing gap between wages and the cost of living in South Florida by establishing a minimum living wage for our community.”
Recent studies have proven that the significant disparity between Miami’s median income of just under $31,000 and the cost-to-live comfortably of $77,000, which allows residents to afford such items as rent, food and healthcare, is the largest in the country. Because the cost of living in Miami Beach is one of the highest in the state, there is an even greater need for a fair minimum wage.
In 2004, more than 70% of Floridians voted to approve a constitutional amendment that allowed municipalities to set a higher minimum wage than the state to more accurately reflect the higher cost of living in some parts of our very diverse state.
Mayor Levine added, “I am proud of our city for leading the way in reversing the trend that makes Florida a high cost, low wage state. Cities throughout the United States have passed similar local minimum wage ordinances and the evidence shows the positive impact they have had on the local economy. My sincere hope is that Governor Scott and Tallahassee will partner with communities like Miami Beach who have a higher cost of living and need to establish our own minimum wage so we can grow our economy and workforce.”
The ordinance by Mayor Philip Levine will take effect January 1, 2018 and gradually increase, over a period of four years, the minimum living wage for all workers employed in the City of Miami Beach and covered by the federal minimum wage. The ordinance will raise this rate to $13.31 per hour by 2021, the rate currently mandated for employees of City contractors pursuant to the City’s Living Wage Ordinance as codified in Miami Beach City Code §2-408. The City’s minimum living wage would be set at $10.31 per hour beginning in 2018, with one dollar per hour increases every year until the rate of $13.31 is reached on January 1, 2021. Thereafter, the City Commission could annually, at its discretion, consider whether an increase in an amount equal to the Consumer Price Index for the year should be implemented.