Review of Santa Fe, New Mexico

Living wage: business is booming!
Star Rating - 6/15/2008
As a business person, my experience has shown that the living wage ordinance actually improves the bottom line, in that employees are more motivated and there's much less problem with folks not showing up to work (e.g. due to problems making rent, cars breaking down and not being able to afford repairs, etc.) and it has reduced turnover / improved employee retention. Moreover, it's just a better business climate when employees are happy; they have a better demeanor and attitude and it shows in their relations with customers.

From a business perspective, I can say it's improved things in our city. More cities should consider adopting such ordinances. The Chicken Little "sky is falling" crowd who lobbied so heavily against it and out spent proponents 3 or 4 to 1 (but were still defeated!) can look around and see that the ordinance has, in fact, not "decimated" our economy as they claimed it would; Santa Fe is thriving! It should be noted that Santa Fe's living wage ordinance only applies to employers with at least 25 employees, so very small businesses have a chance to get off the ground when they are just starting out. I believe that is a good compromise.
S.L. | Santa Fe, NM
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