Proposed Birmingham Minimum Wage Hike, Alabama Restaurant Week

Aug 18, 2015

Birmingham City Council

The Birmingham City Council will consider increasing the city’s minimum wage to $10.10 per hour.

Local media reports the council could vote on an ordinance as soon as this evening.

Dozens of people rallied outside City Hall after a council meeting last month to show support for an ordinance requiring all businesses within the city and those contracted through the city to raise the minimum wage.

Alabama doesn't have a state minimum wage law, meaning the standard is the federal wage floor of $7.25. An employee who works 40 hours a week at minimum wage makes about $15,000 a year.

Council President Johnathan Austin submitted the ordinance. It would first increase the minimum wage to $8.50 in July 2016 and again to $10.10 in July 2017.

Governor Robert Bentley is endorsing Ohio Governor John Kasich for the Republican presidential nomination. Alabama Public Radio’s Stan Ingold has more.

Governor Kasich joined Bentley at the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame in Birmingham.

Governor Bentley says Kasich has the executive level experience and background necessary to lead.  Bentley called Kasich to offer his support after seeing him in a recent debate.

The Governor cites Kasich's experience and compassion as factors in his decision to endorse him. Bentley is the first Deep South governor to endorse Kasich, who is generally viewed as being among the more moderate Republican contenders.

While Kasich is among the lesser-known of the Republican candidates, a strong performance during the first debate produced fresh signs of momentum.

Bentley was a convention delegate for former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee in 2008.

Alabama Restaurant Week is underway and this year’s event includes tourism as well as food.

Participating restaurants are offering reduced price lunch and dinner menus to attract new customers. Alabama’s tourism office is also working to promote culinary weekends in cities like Birmingham.

Grey Brennan is the Regional Director of the Alabama Tourism Department. He says it’s a great way for local establishments to promote themselves.

“We have heard from several restaurants who love the fact that their business increases during Alabama restaurant week and that they get new customers, people that they’ve never seen before walk into their restaurant and decide to try it out. So from that standpoint, it is a great economic boom to the individual restaurant."

Along with the Restaurant Week prices, Brennan says restaurants still have their original menus available. Restaurant Week continues through this Sunday.

The Alabama Secretary of State's office says several voter registration events are being held in the coming week.

The government office is hosting a registration event tomorrow at Moody City Hall in St. Claire County. Additional registration drives are being held in Greene County on Saturday at the Black Belt Folk Roots Festival and next Tuesday, Aug. 25 at the Midland City Town Hall. Each event begins at 10 a.m.

Alabamians must present valid a photo ID to participate in elections. Valid forms of identification include driver's licenses, federally issued ID cards and U.S. passports among others.

State residents can also apply for a free voter ID if they're registered to vote but don't have a valid form of photo identification. Those applicants must provide documentation proving their name, date of birth, voter registration and current address.