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How Does the One Percent Spend Its Money?




According to filings from the Long Beach City Clerk, hotels and hotel corporations are the only donors to the campaign against Measure N, the Long Beach hotel worker living wage initiative on the November 6 ballot. The hotels have contributed $376,180 so far — an estimated $188 per affected employee — to keep their workers from having a minimum wage of $13 an hour and five paid sick days a year.

That $188 could go a long way toward buying new shoes, school clothes or backpacks for the kids of hotel workers. If given to hotel workers, most of the $376,180 would be spent in Long Beach, stimulating the local economy. Small business owners understand this, which is why more than 130 of them have pledged their support for Measure N.

Instead, the hotels are spending their money on consultants, lawyers and pollsters to fight the modest minimum wage measure.

While the No on Measure N campaign charges that the living wage measure is backed by outsiders from Los Angeles, 66 percent of its money has come from hotel corporate centers in Oklahoma and Kentucky.

But isn’t it great that Measure N gives us a chance to engage in a head-to-head against the One Percent on the specifics of how working people should be treated? In arguing against the measure, the No on N website lists some of the measure’s provisions, including requirements that hotels disburse 100 percent of service charges and gratuities to non-management staff, provide each worker with five sick days per year and give a benefits package to all full-time employees.

Measure N opponents decided to highlight these requirements because they think voters won’t support them. But aren’t these the building blocks of stable employment?

If you support these reasonable standards and want to help draw a line in the sand for working families in Long Beach, visit and join the campaign for Measure N. You’ll be glad you did.

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