FAIR MINIMUM WAGE ACT OF 2007 -- (House of Representatives - January 10, 2007)
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Mrs. WILSON of New Mexico. Mr. Speaker, my colleagues, I would like to tell you about one of my constituents.
Her name is Mary Padilla, and she runs Roadrunner Transmission in Albuquerque, New Mexico. She has five employees, and she has been in business for 7 years, and she provides health insurance for every one of those five employees. Mary tells me that if we raise the minimum wage, she is going to have a tough time continuing to provide health insurance for her employees, and she may have to make a choice that she doesn't want to make.
Mary is not alone. More than 3 million Americans have gotten new jobs in the last 36 months with small businesses. The toughest thing for a small business person to do is to make the payroll and provide health insurance.
This motion to recommit would add one provision into this bill on the minimum wage. It would say, if you are an employer who is providing health insurance for your employees, that benefit is worth more than the bump up in the minimum wage, and you would not have to comply with these new rules with respect to the minimum wage. It would stay where it is for your small business.
One of the biggest problems we face as a country is the uninsured population. In my State, about one in four people doesn't have health insurance. This provision would encourage more small and medium-sized businesses to provide health insurance for their employees. A paycheck matters, a paycheck that makes it through the whole week, but it also matters if you are a parent who has to worry every night whether the kids are going to get sick when you cannot pay for it, because you don't have insurance with your job.
I would encourage all of you to support the motion to recommit and support small business health insurance for every employee in America.
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