Branden Martin does not think a $15/hour minimum wage is “attainable.”
Martin is one of 14 candidates running for an at-large seat on Peoria city council. The longtime entrepreneur, who claims to have launched over 40 businesses in his career, believes minimum wage should be designated for high school students or recent high school graduates.
“That’s really become an issue that people have to live on this [wage.]” said Martin. “The problems at $15/hr are the same at $8.25/hr. It just slides the scale.”
Martin, raised in central Illinois, believes the burden would fall on business owners, especially small businesses.
The interview comes as state lawmakers in Springfield debate if Illinois should adopt the pay raise. Martin thinks best method to strengthen the local economy includes attracting businesses to Peoria and looking for missed opportunities.
“The long term goal for me in a four year team is that we start to create jobs and bring business here and aggressively outreach for new businesses to come here,” Martin said. “[We should] capitalize on what we have to offer.”
Watch the full interview for Martin’s thoughts on the city’s finances, recreational marijuana and how his entrepreneurial background translates to city leadership.