SURREY — The majority of Surrey businesses don’t support a $15 minimum wage in the province, according to a recent Surrey Board of Trade Survey.
Just over 20 per cent of its 2,200 members supported a $15 minimum.
Many members felt a $15 minimum wage hike would place too high a burden on businesses and several commented that the increase would fuel technological substitution.
On Sept. 15, B.C.’s minimum wage will increase from $10.45 to $10.85 an hour. The hike is 30 cents more than the scheduled 10 cents increase as indexed in the Consumer Price Index.
The minimum wage will further increase to $11.25 next September, another 30 cents more than an anticipated CPI increase of 10 cents.
To offset the impact on businesses, the government has promised to reduce small business tax by 40 per cent in 2017-2018.
The SBOT survey revealed more than 60 per cent of respondents support this year’s increase.
“Regarding minimum wage, the results of the survey did support the Surrey Board of Trade’s current policy which is to have the minimum wage indexed to the CPI, with predictable and consistent increases so that businesses can adjust without undue impact – especially on the small to medium sized employers,” said Anita Huberman, CEO of Surrey Board of Trade.
Surrey Board of Trade says nearly 70 per cent of the survey respondents work for companies that employ 50 people or less.