Business owners react to minimum wage increase - KOAA.com | Continuous News | Colorado Springs and Pueblo

Business owners react to minimum wage increase

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2018 is right around the corner, and that means Colorado's minimum wage is going up.

The minimum wage is set to rise from $9.30 an hour to $10.20 an hour starting Monday.  Small business and restaurant owners in Colorado Springs said they're concerned. 

"When this happens... It is inflationary," commented Steve Kanatzar, owner of the Airplane Restaurant. 

Kanatzar said when prices rise for small business owners, in this case restaurant owners, the cost has to made up elsewhere.

"Most restaurants I know aren't going to compensate for the new minimum wage increase in just one area," Kanatzar said.

Kanatzar said he expects to see other businesses raising menu prices as well as reducing labor. This is something that the Colorado Restaurant Association has also been hearing. In late 2016, the CRA reported that many businesses indicated that they will be eliminating bussers and support staff to make up the monetary difference. 

However, some small business owners believe the pay increase to be a good thing. 

"I think everyone needs to have a wage they can feed their families on, and this isn't it. But it might be getting closer," commented Kathy Read, owner of Holly Berry House. 

Even though, she admits, the increase is hard on small businesses, "Especially with competition from the internet, but it's only fair," she went on. 

But regardless, come 2018 minimum wage is going up to $10.20 an hour, followed by $11.10 in 2019, and $12.00 in 2020. 

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