Johnson County set to raise 'recommended' minimum wage to $10.40 an hour

Published: Jun. 25, 2019 at 5:06 PM CDT
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Starting Monday, July 1, Johnson County will implement a "recommended" minimum wage, asking employers to pay their employees a minimum of $10.40 an hour.

Technically, the ordinance from the county's board of supervisors is unenforceable- so by law, it is not required businesses have to pay more than the state standard $7.25 an hour.

For some businesses like Cedar Ridge Winery & Distillery that are paying more than minimum wage, they are seeing the benefits.

Leadership there says especially during the summer months when they see more customers, staff typically make double the standard minimum wage. Jeff Quint, the proprietor of Cedar Ridge, says it is hard to imagine an hour of anyone's time worth a little more than seven dollars an hour.

"It's hard to argue a person's time being worth a certain minimum value," Quint said. "I think we're fortunate enough in that the hourly staff we have here is generally the people working out in retail and the restaurant side of things. And especially this time of year, that minimum wage is not difficult to achieve at all."

Quint said by offering a little more, it typically makes their hiring process easier.

"I think the word gets out of the tip income, really, that we can add to an employee's income," Quint said. "None of that's guaranteed, but after years of doing this, we have a pretty good feel for how it's going to turn out."

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