Op-ed: All parties agree… Vote no on BB and CC to preserve the City Council’s landmark minimum-wage ordinance

The Berkeley City Council unanimously passed a new minimum-wage ordinance that is one of the most progressive in the country and is a significant victory for workers and the community. The new ordinance takes the best from both BB and CC. All stakeholders agree: vote No on BB and CC, enabling the superior council ordinance to prevail.

Berkeley’s minimum wage will increase to $15/hr in 2018 and, starting in 2017, workers will be entitled to up to 72 hours of paid sick leave. Berkeley can be proud that we’ve given our lowest paid workers a much-needed raise while giving our many local businesses and nonprofits time to adjust to the increase.

Before this landmark ordinance was passed, competing Ballot Measures BB and CC were placed on the ballot. Fearing a contentious fight between competing campaigns, Councilman Laurie Capitelli, EBMUD Director Andy Katz and State Senate candidate Nancy Skinner brought the proponents of Measures BB and CC together to try to find common ground and their consensus agreement is the basis of the council’s ordinance.

Once submitted, ballot measures cannot be withdrawn. Berkeley voters now find themselves in the unusual position of being urged by the proponents of Measures BB and CC to vote NO on each of the measures to ensure that the council’s ordinance remains the governing law.

The result is an unusually big tent of supporters for the council ordinance, from SEIU 1021 to the Berkeley Chamber. And virtually every political organization, from the Berkeley Democratic Club to the Alameda Labor Council is urging a NO/NO vote on measures BB and CC.

Councilwoman Lori Droste, Managing Director for the Berkeley Rep, Susie Medak, and EBMUD Director Andy Katz, have all spoken in favor of supporting the City Council Minimum Wage Ordinance. Please join labor, nonprofits and small businesses and vote NO on Measures BB and CC.

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Linda Maio is the Vice Mayor of the City of Berkeley.