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Survey shows divided support for Portland minimum wage initiatives

Highlights, In the Media, News, News & Events  

Many members of Buy Local who responded to the questionnaire back a $10.10 wage, but oppose a $15-an-hour minimum.

The majority of Portland’s independent business owners surveyed support the city’s new minimum wage ordinance, which increases the minimum wage to $10.10 an hour, but most oppose a city referendum that would boost the minimum wage to $15 an hour, according to the results of a questionnaire sent out by Portland Buy Local.

According to the online survey, 66 percent of respondents support the city’s minimum wage ordinance and 24 percent oppose it.

Sixty-three percent of respondents oppose the proposal to increase the minimum wage in Portland to $15 an hour, and 28 percent support it.

Ellen Kanner, co-owner of Dobra Tea on Exchange Street, said a $15 an hour minimum wage may work in affluent cities like San Fransisco but won’t work in Maine because the middle class here can’t afford it.

“Unless we are going to bump up everybody’s pay, the middle class will be paying for this,” she said of the proposed $15 an hour minimum wage. “The people on the lower end with no skill will get big raises – double what they make now – and we are not going to get that.”

She said her employees start off at $8 an hour but eventually can make between $12 and $15 an hour including tips.

Debra Tenenbaum, a board member of Portland Buy Local, said the survey shows that many business owners support giving workers a fair wage but there’s a limit to how much they can afford to pay them.

“There is only a certain level that business owners can pay their employees before they have problems staying in business,” said Tenebaum, who owns Front Porch Public Relations.

Portland Buy Local emailed the survey last week to about 350 members who own businesses, and 105 members responded.

None said they pay $7.50 an hour, the state minimum wage, and only three said they pay employees less than $9 an hour.

More than half of the respondents pay their employees between $9 and $15 an hour.

The new Portland minimum wage goes into effect on Jan. 1.

The wage will rise to $10.68 an hour in 2017, and starting in 2018 it will increase on July 1 at the same rate as the Consumer Price Index, which accounts for inflation.

A referendum on the November ballot would raise the city’s minimum wage to $15 per hour by Jan. 1, 2017, for any business with 500 or more employees, and by July 1, 2019, for smaller businesses.


To view the article, visit the Portland Press Herald’s Website


Vote Now for the 2015 Indie Biz Awards!

Articles, Events, In the Media, Member Events, Member Updates, News, News & Events  

Our amazing local nominees have been announced! Now it’s up to you to decide who will win the 2015 Indie Biz Awards – vote now.  

Be sure to attend the Awards on October 22nd, from 6-9pm, at Port City Music Hall to see who will win the hearts and minds of Portlanders – admission is free, there will be a live and silent auction, live music, and local brews on tap! Find event details here. 

Fill out my online form.

Thank you to our 2015 Indie Biz sponsors:

green clean    pdd_logo_350 high resolution (2)    Coffee By Design    bayside   LE_Logo_Payroll (1)-2  BF2014LogoBigBoxBevelCreamNoBevel.       revision-logo-150x150  

 portproperty    Marsh Agency logo    Print    CBFG-logo-horizontal-cmyk    Kelseyswmpglogo

  Sebago-Brewing-2013     strongpaw_logo_long     Tsunami Tattoo   562705_10150701046753844_1241396499_n

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Portland Buy Local to host forum on Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)

In the Media, News, News & Events  

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) celebrates its 25th anniversary this year, and Portland Buy Local is hosting a brown bag lunch forum on ADA compliance. Learn what your business can do (and in some cases, is legally required to do) to accommodate customers, employees, and clients with disabilities.  This session will also include an overview of aXs Map – an app where users review business on accessibility. Program will include presentations from Alpha One Now and AXS Map and a question and answer session.

When: Thursday, September 24, 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Where: Think Tank Coworking, 533 Congress Street

Email with questions or for more information.


Indie Biz Awards – Nominations Open!

News, News & Events, Uncategorized  

Click Here to nominate your favorite locally owned & independent businesses and organizations.  This year’s categories include Flavor of Portland; Environmental Hero; Portland’s Best Kept Secret; Portland Beacon; Best Neighborhood; Out of Sight, Not out of Mind; Creative Crusader; Best New Business and Portland Icon.


To be eligible to win a 2015 Indie Biz award, organizations do not need to be members of Portland Buy Local, but they must have a location in Portland and be locally owned and independent.  Five nominees in each category will move on to the official voting.


Nominations will be accepted online until  5 p.m. on Wednesday, September 2nd, 2015.  Share with your friends and nominate today!
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Portland Press Herald Editorial: Maine Voices

Highlights, In the Media, News, News & Events  

Wealth of vibrant independent businesses enriches all of Portland  

By Kristen Smith

We’ve all read the “best of” lists and the accolades and recommendations that put Portland on the map for the rest of the country. But have we ever stopped and thought about exactly why Portland is such a beloved destination and place to live? Or, to put it more broadly, what makes any of us like any particular city?

The answer lies in the independent businesses. Think about the last city you enjoyed visiting. What made that place stand out for you? What made it interesting? What made it better than Anytown, USA? Chances are, somewhere in your answer would be the local, independent businesses.

Read more.


Thank you sustaining members!

Aikido of Maine   /   Andrew and Debra Tenenbaum   /   angela adams   /   AQUARIUS BALLROOM DANCE STUDIOS   /   BENCHMARK Residential & Investment Real Estate   /   The Brand Company   /   Brianna Courneya   /   Bull Feeney's   /   Casco Bay EyeCare   /   Casco Bay Frames & Gallery   /   Coffee By Design   /   CornerStone Building & Restoration   /   The Fish & Bone   /   Goodwill Industries of Northern New England   /   Green Clean Maine   /   Joan Leitzer   /   John McVeigh   /   Longfellow Books   /   Marsh Agency   /   Nine Stones   /   Nomads   /   OTTO   /   Peter Metsch   /   Planet Dog Foundation   /   Old Port Magazine   /   Port Property Management   /   Portland’s Downtown District   /   Portland Farmers’ Market   /   Sebago Brewing Company   /   The Great Lost Bear   /   The SunriseGuide   /   TruChoice FCU   /   Tsunami Tattoo   /   University Credit Union   /   Vervacious   /   XPress Copy

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