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Say Higher Minimum Will Benefit Businesses and Local Economy

For Immediate Release: November 5, 2013

Contact: Bob Keener, Business for a Fair Minimum Wage,, 617-610-6766
Corinne Horowitz, NJ Main Street Alliance,, 609-937-1168

NEWARK – Business leaders in New Jersey applaud the passage of Ballot Question 2 to increase the minimum wage to $8.25, and tie it to the rising cost of living. Business owners cite various reasons for their support, including the need to boost consumer demand and increase the minimum wage to better keep up with New Jersey’s high cost of living.

A video featuring business owners was released online last week to show support for Ballot Question 2 and dispel myths that small businesses would be hurt by a minimum wage increase.

Here’s what business owners said today:

Geetha Jayamaran, Grab em Snacks and Spoon and Sprout Café, Ringoes: “Increasing wages and putting more money in the pockets of consumers is just what our economy needs. When people make more money, they will go out to eat more, buy something extra for their kids – and businesses will benefit.”

Mitch Cahn, President, Unionwear, a manufxacturer with 120 employees in Newark: “A higher minimum wage will actually help business owners by reducing absenteeism and worker turnover, which costs businesses way more than nickel and diming on wages. Secure workers earning a living wage are productive workers and better consumers. A higher minimum wage just makes fiscal sense."

Debbie Brackett, Owner, Gia Gelato Café, Jersey City: “I care about my employees, and think it’s important to pay them above the minimum wage. On a daily basis we hear of the ever increasing costs of transportation, gas, food and other daily living expenses. Business owners like me understand that the old minimum wage of $7.25 will not sustain families and keep the economy healthy.”

Molly Sumner, Owner, Kindred Companions, Frenchtown: "I believe in paying my employees a fair living wage well above what is currently required by the state and federal government. With a higher minimum, more people would be able to pay for services like the dog training and pet sitting we provide."

Kelly Conklin, Co-owner, Foley Waite Associates, an architectural woodworking firm in Kenilworth: “This increase is a long overdue step in the right direction. Small businesses will not be hurt – quite the contrary. It’s time we reinforced the better business model of businesses that pay a living wage. Voting to raise the wage floor while insuring raises in the future is the best way to do that.”


Business for a Fair Minimum Wage is a national network of business owners and executives who believe a fair minimum wage makes good business sense.

NJ Main Street Alliance is an advocacy network of 1400 small and independent businesses statewide, whose mission is to create opportunities for business owners to speak for themselves on issues that impact their businesses and local economies.