It’s not so easy living in city with America’s highest minimum wage

Illustration for article titled It’s not so easy living in city with America’s highest minimum wage
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If you don’t have a Wall Street Journal subscription login yet, this would be a fine time to sign up for one. Today the paper takes a close look at Emeryville, California, a city just north of Oakland, location of Pixar Animation Studios and home to the highest minimum wage in the country, at $16.30.

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The piece is a study in tensions, as labor advocates say the relatively high minimum wage is necessary in a city where the median rent for a one-bedroom apartment is above $2,800. But small business owners, especially restaurants, say the wage forces them to lay off staff or raise already high prices.

It’s absolutely worth reading, as it presents a microcosm of the national debate surrounding raising the minimum wage. But while the piece examines the economic needs of low-wage employees on one side and small-business owners on the other, an elephant in the room goes largely unremarked on: the tech companies whose high-paid workers drive up the cost of living in cities like Emeryville, Seattle, Austin, not to mention the towns in the Silicon Valley. What is their culpability, if any, in the discussion over rising rents that threaten to squeeze both employees and employers alike? Click on over to The Wall Street Journal for yourself.

Kate Bernot is a freelance writer and a certified beer judge. She was previously managing editor at The Takeout.

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Cayde-6's Unloaded Dice

But while the piece examines the economic needs of low-wage employees on one side and small-business owners on the other, an elephant in the room goes largely unremarked on: the tech companies whose high-paid workers drive up the cost of living in cities like Emeryville, Seattle, Austin, not to mention the towns in the Silicon Valley.

It’s not just tech workers. There’s tons of foreign money pouring into Bay Area real estate.

One of my coworkers grew up in San Mateo. His parents’ house, while not the worst, is definitely in need of cosmetic renovations. Several years ago, they were offered 3 million, sight unseen from someone in China.

All those greedy NIMBY’s who care more about their property values than allowing for a town to be become livable need to burn in hell.

Or Levi’s Stadium (same thing, really).