As The Washington Post reports, D.C. Council members are voting Wednesday on a bill that would demand mega-retailers pay their employees at least $12.50 an hour, with Walmart the clear target.
Walmart, which pays its hourly associates an average of $8.84 an hour, according to Glassdoor, threatened to stop at least three of the six planned Walmart stores from opening in the city if the bill succeeded, forcing the council to decide: Are no new Walmart jobs better than poorly paid ones?
In a Post op-ed published Tuesday, Walmart regional general manager Alex Barron called the bill "an eleventh-hour effort" that is "arbitrary and discriminatory" and "discourages investment in Washington."
Update, 07/10/13, 5.50 p.m. EDT: The city council passed the bill by a vote of 8 to 5. It is now headed to the desk of the mayor, who has indicated that he may veto it.
The ultimatum was "immensely discouraging," Mayor Vincent C. Gray told the Post, since six new stores -- three of them already under construction -- that Walmart is planning would employ 1,800 people, bringing needed jobs, cash, affordable retail, and fresh produce to the capital's poorer neighborhoods. Barron said even the three stores underway could be scrapped if the bill becomes law, pending a review of "financial and legal implications." Read more >>