Last year, on February 10, 2011, Donna F. Edwards (MD-04), a Democrat of course, introduced H.R. 631: Wages Act: To amend the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 to establish a base minimum wage for tipped employees.
The generous provisions of that bill are as follows:
SEC. 2. BASE MINIMUM WAGE FOR TIPPED EMPLOYEES.
Section 3(m)(1) of the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 (29 U.S.C. 203(m)(1)) is amended by adding before the semicolon the following: `, except that, for purposes of this paragraph, the cash wage paid such employee shall be not less than--
`(A) $3.75 an hour beginning 90 days after the date of enactment of the Working for Adequate Gains for Employment in Services Act;
`(B) $5.00 an hour beginning 1 year after the date on which the change required by subparagraph (A) takes effect; and
`(C) beginning 2 years after the date on which the change required by subparagraph (A) takes effect and adjusted as necessary thereafter, 70 percent of the wage in effect under section 6(a)(1) but in no case less than $5.50 an hour.'.
The usual progressive suspects co-signed this bill. Don't look for any blue-nosed Dems as co-signers though.
Of course, the bill went nowhere. It was referred to the Subcommittee on Workforce Protections and there it languishes forever, or until it dies at the end of this congress.
Undoubtedly, there are a lot of American workers who slave at the princely rate of $3.75/hr, most of them women. Those persons make $7800 annually. If you wager that they might actually coup half of their wages in tip compensation, that would rise to $10,700 annually.
Tipped workers in posh establishments very likely have a much higher hourly and a much higher rate of tipping, um, let's say they make the huge sum of $10/hr. Their annual total would be $20,800. If you add in calculated averaged out tips, it could hit $31,200. These figures are calculated on 52 weeks of 40 hours each, with no time off for sick leave or vacation, because I'm going to assume that the vast majority of these workers are not eligible for either sick pay or vacation. If they take time off for sickness or a break from work, I'm going to assume that there is no compensation for such time and I'll damn betcha I'm pretty safe in my assumptions.
You can probably also safely assume that if an establishment shuts down for holidays that tipped employees are left without income during that time.
How very interesting it is to compare the compensation of these workers with the AP highest paid CEOs in 2011, calculating their hourly income assuming they worked 40 hours a week for 52 weeks annually, 2,080 hours:
1. David Simon, Simon Property Group, $137.2 million, $65,961.54 per hour.Jeepers. Those CEOs who earn less per hour than top-paid tip employee earn annually are mere cawkers who talk flash.
2. Leslie Moonves, CBS, $68.4 million, $32,884.62 per hour.
3. David M. Zaslav, Discovery Communications, $52.4 million, $25,192.31 hourly.
4. Sanjay K. Jha, Motorola Mobility, $47.2 million, $22,692.31 hourly.
5. Philippe P. Dauman, Viacom, $43.1 million, $20,721.15 hourly.
6. David M. Cote, Honeywell International, $35.7 million, $17,163.46 hourly.
7. Robert A. Iger, Walt Disney, $31.4 million, $15,096.15 hourly.
8. Clarence P. Cazalot Jr., Marathon Oil, $29.9 million, $14,375.00 hourly.
9. John P. Daane, Altera, $29.6, million, $14,230.77 hourly.
10. Alan Mulally, Ford Motor, $29.5 million, $14,182.69 hourly.
But, one must never forget there are other compensations for CEOs:
short term incentives (STIs), sometimes known as bonusesAnd never forget the Golden Parachute, available only to the elite.
long-term incentive plans (LTIP)
paid expenses (perquisites)