$10 Minimum Wage Creating Questions As Arizona's Small Businesses Adjust

By  Casey Kuhn
Published: Friday, January 6, 2017 - 5:57pm
Updated: Friday, January 6, 2017 - 6:13pm

Sponsored by BeachFleischman
(Photo by Christina Estes - KJZZ)
Arizona voters approved raising Arizona's minimum wage to $10 an hour on January 1, 2017.

A week after the new $10 minimum wage has been in effect for Arizona employees, business owners are still asking questions on what exactly the law entails. 

Officials say since Proposition 206 was approved by voters, calls have been pouring in every day from businesses with questions on all facets of the law.

Arizona’s Industrial Commission spokesman Bob Charles says a majority of the questions are what employees are exempt from the minimum wage — and he says almost no one is exempt.

“Certain ones like a barbershop, maybe where they just deal with people walking in and they buy their supplies down the street, they would be somebody who would possibly qualify for an exemption," Charles said. "But it’s very difficult in this day and age to have an exemption where you don’t do business outside of Arizona.”

He says the office’s website is a great resource for anyone with more questions.

“We have put out a list of the FAQ we have been getting and it’s gotten extensive," Charles said. "The document we have working here at the industrial commission is nearly 30 pages.”

Local store Samurai Comics owner Moryha Banks has three locations and about 30 employees. She says it’s not been an easy transition for them, and is still working on implementing the other part of the law — mandatory sick time for all employees.

“On the back end, as far as us the business owners, what we have to keep track of, it’s a lot more than just, I have to pay you $2 more an hour,” she said.

Mandatory sick time for part-time and full-time employees takes effect July 1 this year, and officials expect even more questions once that hits.

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