Press Release March 19, 2008
Help for Eureka's Working Poor



Wednesday, March 19, 2008


Living Wage Initiative Begins in Eureka

Proposed ballot measure would set a $10 minimum wage in the city


Yesterday at Eureka City Hall an initiative to set a $10 city minimum wage was filed with the City Clerk by community activist Bill Holmes with the help of The Alliance For A Fair Chance, a group of activists and workers committed to reducing poverty in our community.


The "Eureka Fair Compensation Act" is the working name of a ballot measure for the November ballot that was inspired by living wage campaigns in other cities across California and the country.


"It's time Eureka takes a stand on behalf of honoring the labor of the poorest workers in our community," said Holmes. "People who work full-time trying to raise a family shouldn't have to live in poverty because of the declining value of our minimum wage, which is barely half what it should be in inflation-adjusted dollars since 1968."


The ordinance would set Eureka's minimum wage at $10.00 an hour starting Jan. 1, 2009, although small businesses and non-profits would have a transition period for the first two years, wherein their minimum would be $9 in 2009 and $9.50 in 2010. Unlike other city minimum wage laws, the Eureka ordinance would index upwards to stay at a level $2 above that set by the state, preventing the excessive erosion of its purchasing power.


Once Eureka's City Attorney has responded to the campaign's Notice of Intent with an official Title and Summary presenting a basic explanation of the measure, proponents will have two-and-a-half months to collect approximately 1,200 signatures from Eureka voters to qualify it for the municipal election in November.


To contact Bill Holmes email:


To contact the Alliance, write,


For campaign updates and the text of the ordinance: