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By Owen Reimer
Nebraska News Service, Oct 19, 2022 

A ballot initiative to incrementally raise the Nebraska minimum wage to $15 per hour by 2026 stirred debate in the 1st Congressional District’s focused hearing on Tuesday, Oct. 16 at the state capitol. The testimonies were largely in favor of increasing the wage. ...

Some of the testifying proponents, however, were business owners who felt the minimum wage increase would be beneficial, including for improving employee morale.

Cinnamon Dokken, owner of A Novel Idea Bookstore in Lincoln, said she could not get wages as high as she would like without a statewide raise to boost the economy.

Julie Sonderup, owner of Lincoln businesses Cycle Works bike shop and Moose’s Tooth, called her decision to set base wages at $15 one of the best she’s ever made. She described her employees as more interested and happier people who care about the work they do.

“It’s raised the level of customer service that those employees are willing to provide,” Sonderup said. “They’re all in. They want to learn about the products we have on a much deeper level than when we would just have the average person coming in to need a paycheck.” ...

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