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Regent Opposes Higher Minimum Wage On UI Campus

Johnson County plans to raise the minimum wage in the county to $10.10 an hour by 2017.

A member of Iowa’s Board of Regents says Johnson County’s raising of the minimum wage is “out of step with the rest of Iowa”.

Johnson County is incrementally raising the wages to at least $10.10 an hour by 2017, action taken by the County Board of Supervisors.

At today’s Regents meeting in Ames, Regent Larry McKibben of Marshalltown said he’ll oppose extending that to the University of Iowa campus.

“I’m working hard to reduce debt of families and children, and we can’t be an outlier vis-a-vis the other two universities, and I want an answer to that,” he said.

McKibben’s opposition came during a University of Iowa presentation which mentioned the UI’s plans to raise wages in line with the Johnson County ordinance.

Later, the UI’s chief financial administrator, Rod Lehnertz, said the University isn’t going to be bound by the Johnson County wage ordinance.

“What we’re going to commit to is a market-based hiring of employees for the University,” he said.  “It doesn’t necessarily mean though that we start with a stature that meets a minimum wage requirement.

Several Johnson County communities are also opting-out of the supervisors’ minimum wage ordinance.