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Who, other than Senator Howard Stephenson of Draper knows for sure what prompted him to sponsor legislation directed at one of Salt Lake City Mayor Rocky Anderson’s pet issues? KSL hopes it wasn’t done in a spirit of vindictiveness and that it isn’t retaliation, as some have claimed, for some of the mayor’s ill-advised pronouncements of late. After all, that rarely leads to quality legislation.
At issue is Senate Bill 139, a measure that would prohibit cities such as Salt Lake from giving preference to businesses seeking government contracts that pay wages above the federal minimum. Mayor Anderson’s living wage initiative won’t necessarily solve the problems of those who try to make ends meet on low wages, even though they work hard and put in long hours. But it does send a message of a community’s concern for those who desire to be self-sufficient, yet struggle to stay off the welfare roles.
On the other hand, there are a number of valid concerns about the impact imposed wage levels would have on many businesses and employers. Senate Bill 139 may or may not be good legislation. We’re honestly not sure. KSL just hopes it gets considered on its merits, and not because of other less valid reasons.