LancasterOnline: Wolf visits Lancaster to push minimum wage increase, while local companies say they're far past it

By Gillian McGoldrick
LNP / LancasterOnline, May 26, 2021

Gov. Tom Wolf visited Lancaster city Wednesday morning to repeat his longstanding call to raise Pennsylvania’s minimum wage, the last state in the region to sit at the federal level of $7.25 an hour, which hasn’t been increased since 2009. ...

Wolf held his press conference outside Two Dudes Painting Co. in Lancaster city....

Peter Barber, the president and CEO of Two Dudes Painting Co., said providing “livable wages” to his workers is a crucial part of recruitment and retention, and as a result the company is not struggling to fill open positions.

Two Dudes employs more than 65 people, with a starting wage of $14 per hour that automatically increases to $15 after a 90-day training period, he said. The company also offers health insurance and other benefits to employees.

“Fair pay and benefits have been central to our success,” Barber said. “Our turnover is low, which saves considerable money and time by keeping the employees we’ve worked hard to train, and they do better quality work with fewer costly errors.”

Jennie Groff, CEO of Stroopies Inc., echoed this sentiment in her remarks at the press conference, adding that her business’ success and upcoming expansion to a new distribution center are the result of its commitment to caring for employees.

Stroopies Inc., and its storefront Lancaster Sweet Shoppe, start employees at $12 an hour. The company employs multiple refugee women for the operation making 10,000 stroopwaffles per week, and just recently hired five additional refugee women to work there. ...

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