New wage law prompts CoHo to raise prices

New wage law prompts CoHo to raise prices

Photo Credits: JUSTIN HAN / AGGIE. Swirlz cafe at Coffee House is a ASUCD vendors that saw price increases of 25 cents during Fall Quarter 2019. October 28, 2019.

Minimum wage in California will be set to $15 by 2022, making it more costly to pay employees

An increase in prices at the CoHo at the start of Fall Quarter have drawn student backlash — “I don’t feel like [the increase] is fair, looking at how much we pay for tuition,” said Yara Habeeb, a third-year computer science major. The recent price increases, however, resulted from a California minimum wage law that goes into effect in 2022.

Public Information Officer for the California Department of Industrial Relations Paola Laverde explained that Senate Bill 3, signed into law by former Calif. Governor Jerry Brown in 2016, states that by 2022 the minimum wage of California will reach $15.

“It is a good thing that minimum wage is going up for workers, because the cost of living in California has increased,” Laverde said. “It had been stagnant for a while, so there was a push in 2016 to increase the minimum wage to $15 dollars.”

Darin Schluep, food service director for Associated Students Dining Services, said the CoHo management team never takes pricing decisions lightly, but, unfortunately, because of the increased minimum wage, this was a necessary and unavoidable decision. 

“The annual increase in minimum wage ($1.00 more per hour each year until it reaches $15.00/hr. in January 2022) means approximately $200,000 in added costs each year that we must take into consideration when setting our budget,” Schluep said via email. “Rather than looking at cutting staff, we have worked to find ways to increase efficiency and to leverage our buying power for better pricing on goods. But ultimately some of those additional costs must be passed on to the consumer in order for us to continue to operate on a break-even financial basis.” 

Written by: Isabella Beristain — features@theaggie.org

1 Comment on this Post

  1. This is the least surprising thing that has ever happened, and anyone with an even minimally competent understanding of economics would have been able to tell you this would happen well before the law was enacted. But it is virtually guaranteed that the same people who approved of the minimum wage increase are also upset about the price increase, and it’s even more certain that they will learn nothing from it. Just imagine this on a nation-wide scale if someone like Bernie Sanders or Elizabeth Warren is allowed to enact similar ideas from the lowest common denominator of the left.

    The lesson here is to never prioritize ideological pre-commitments over healthy skepticism; and skepticism is never healthy unless it also addresses your own ideological pre-commitments.

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