TKC MUST READ!!! KANSAS CITY COUNCILMAN LUCAS SUPPORTS COUNCIL MINIMUM WAGE INCREASE ORDINANCE!!!
Social media statement on the upcoming move for a Council vote before Missouri makes this kind of move illegal . . . Money line highlighted . . .
3rd District At-Large Councilman Quinton Lucas . . .
Last week the Missouri Supreme Court (SCOMO) held that the ordinance increasing the minimum wage in the City of St. Louis could go into effect due to flaws in state legislation intended to preempt certain local government actions. Last month, SCOMO also held that Kansas City could not restrict ballot access for initiative petitions based on our (too often) flawed legal interpretations that the measures were unconstitutional. Owing to the City's mistake, KCMO rescinded our minimum wage increase ordinance and denied supporters access to the ballot for almost two years.
Council now has the opportunity to correct our past mistakes. As a threshold matter, the low wage continues to impact negatively thousands of Kansas Citians and the quality of life for all Kansas Citians because it maintains a permanent class of working poor in our city who need access to services that all taxpayers end up providing. Further, Council should correct our past missteps because we limited the rights of petitioners and advocates based on ultimately flawed legal advice. As the Supreme Court has noted, we should never use legal counsel as a shield against fervent public debate on important issues and I believe the minimum wage is an issue that all sides of the public debate would like to see addressed.
Some of my colleagues note however, that we should "wait and see what happens." Why? For what? We're elected by the citizens of Kansas City to address important issues for Kansas City, not use first the law, then potential state legislature actions as a defense against doing what's right. We've also been discussing the issue for years. A super majority of the current Council has suggested they support a responsible minimum wage increase and the past Council and current Mayor supported an ordinance doing just that before rescinding it based on now-incorrect legal advice.
Along with my 3rd and 5th District colleagues and hopefully others, I plan to support a vote this upcoming Thursday to reinstate the minimum wage increase ordinance already passed by our predecessor Council. There's no need to wait and see. It's hard to ask a person actually working each day to get out of poverty to just keep waiting.
Some contend the state legislature may "punish" the City if we act. I respect those who serve in our legislature and I hope they respect us. Just as they're elected to serve their constituents, we're elected to do what's right for Kansas Citians. What's right is that we show the state our respect for all of our workers.
Developing . . .