Understanding the Plan

For Business

Urbana Wins is committed to helping local businesses thrive. Therefore, as opposed to immediately and forcibly raising wages, our team will provide a voluntary opt in period of about 12 months. During that time, any business that chooses to raise its wages will be able to write-off that cost on their local taxes.

Ideally, capitalism dictates that when some businesses begin to make positive changes, it encourages others to follow. The Urbana Wins team believes that local businesses will seize this opportunity to create more competitive wages and thereby attract higher numbers of quality workers.

If, after the voluntary opt-in period, it is decided that establishing a minimum wage in the city is necessary, then the team will move forward with a phased wage increase program. This will spread the increase to the new minimum wage over several years and allow businesses to continue to write-off the cost during that time. Once the new goal is achieved, the minimum wage will be set against inflation and adjusted annually to compensate for economic fluctuations.

SB 331

Small government is the most effective form of government, but the State of Ohio tried to unconstitutionally limit the right of self-governance with SB 331. This senate bill would have prevented us from raising the minimum wage, but a judge recognized that this legislation violated the “One Subject” clause in the State of Ohio Constitution. The Urbana Wins team is going to stand up for Urbana and protect our right to govern ourselves.

Cleveland.com explained, “At issue is the legislation known as Senate Bill 331, which was passed in the lame duck session of the General Assembly and signed into law by Gov. John Kasich. It was initially meant to regulate the sale of dogs from pet stores and dog retailers. It was also to require the state Department of Agriculture to license pet stores.

But by early December it had become what is known by many as a Christmas tree bill - one hung with wide-ranging amendments that have little or nothing to do with the original intent of the legislation.

The bill had been stuffed with extras proponents said were related because they fit ‘neatly under an overarching theme of eliminating a patchwork quilt of municipal business regulations,’ according to the judge's ruling.

The telecommunications regulations rankled many municipal leaders in that it eroded their ability to control where equipment is placed. That authority would have to be ceded to the state.

Cleveland filed a similar suit in Cuyahoga County court to the one decided in Franklin. Cleveland challenged only the micro-cellular provisions in SB331 but used the same single-subject theory for its opposition to the law. City Spokesman Dan Williams said while Friday's decision does not set precedent for Cuyahoga, it does have ‘persuasive authority’ - meaning it could help shape the decision. 

Part of Senate Bill 331 prohibited communities in the state from raising the minimum wage beyond the state's minimum wage rate which was aimed squarely at Cleveland. Lawmakers added the rule at the request of Cleveland city officials and others, who sought to forestall a special election on the wage hike.

Raise Up Cleveland, the group that sparked the wage fight here with the backing of the Service Employees International Union, had aimed to get a $15-per-hour minimum wage proposal on the ballot.

Jeff Johnson, a mayoral candidate who was also a strong advocate of the proposal to raise minimum wage, said he was delighted by the decision.

‘Now that it's been ruled unconstitutional we have to go through the process,’ he said. ‘There's no state bar so what's the next step? We go back to where we were before the state stepped in.’”