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Minimum Wage in Santa Clara Lags Behind Neighboring Cities

On Tuesday, the Santa Clara City Council finally approved an ordinance that will raise the city’s minimum wage to $15/hour by 2019, becoming the last large city in the county to do so. In addition, minimum wages in Santa Clara will continue to lag behind its neighbors throughout 2017 and 2018. The city waited for 20 months after Mountain View pioneered local $15 local minimum wage ordinances in November 2015, even though no city council members and no members of the public opposed it at last night’s meeting.

Santa Clara City Council member Dominic Caserta, who is running for Santa Clara county Supervisor in the November 2018 election, displayed a characteristic childish hissy fit at the previous city council meeting on July 11 after Mayor Lisa Gillmor proposed delaying the minimum wage ordinance by one week due to an excessively long agenda. City staff have routinely placed too many important items on past council agendas, resulting in meetings lasting in excess of five hours past midnight. Tuesday’s meeting ended after 1 am.

Santa Clara City Council Chambers as the council voted to raise the minimum wage to $15/hour by 2019.

Below are the dates that cities in Santa Clara and San Mateo counties have adopted $15/hour minimum wage ordinances. All will reach $15/hour on January 1, 2019, except Mountain View and Sunnyvale, which will reach $15/hour on January 1, 2018 with the highest minimum wages in the United States.

Mountain View – November 10, 2015
Sunnyvale – April 12, 2016
San Mateo – August 15, 2016
Palo Alto – September 26, 2016
Los Altos – September 27, 2016
Cupertino – October 4, 2016
San Jose – November 15, 2016
Milpitas – February 21, 2017
Santa Clara – July 18, 2017

Local minimum wage advocate Meghan Fraley reported at Tuesday’s city council meeting that $15/hour minimum wage ordinance will apply to 95 percent of all workers in Santa Clara County when they take effect by January 1, 2019.