Loose Lips

Tommy Wells Proposes His Own Living Wage Bill

When the Large Retailer Accountability Act passed the D.C. Council last week with eight votes, LL was surprised that Tommy Wells wasn't one of them.

Here's one reason the Ward 6 councilmember might have held back: he has a living wage bill of his own. Wells announced this afternoon that he's planning to introduce his "Living Wage for All DC" bill when the Council meets again in September.

Wells' bill would double the District's personal income tax deduction, while raising the city's $8.25-an-hour minimum wage a dollar a year for two years, to $10.25. After that, the minimum wage would be tied to cost of living increases.

Where are District businesses going to get all this money? Wells' bill would increase the employee tax credit for businesses with fewer than 150 employees, while dropping the commercial property tax rate from $1.65 to $1.50 on the initial $3 million in value on a property.

The large retailers pushing Mayor Vince Gray to veto the LRAA won't be pleased with one portion of Wells' bill: the "Healthy DC fee." Large employer that don't give their employees health insurance and a living wage would have to pay a fee to a health care fund, which Wells' proposal suggests could be around $2,000 or $3,000 per employee. Wells hasn't decided yet what the benchmark for a "living wage" should be, according to a spokesman.

Photo by Darrow Montgomery

  • name

    Meh. ACA will eliminate the need for employer sponsored healthcare in DC as everyone is shifted off employer roles. No point in charging a penalty for large employers.

    A critical mass will emerge and "city healthcare" will have a constituency larger than the mortgage interest deduction. Income and property taxes will have to skyrocket to pay for everyone's gold plated healthcare as the voting mass won't accept curbs on their benefits. This is the european model 20 year olds who've never worked in europe gush over.

    Pretty soon you'll be in the waiting room with the crackheads after having waited 6 weeks for an appointment for an ear infection (The doctors are already selling off their practices and individual doctors will no longer exist). You'll then be sent to another doctor across town (Baltimore will have us beat here because everything will be co-located at hopkins) and have to take another day off of work in 2 weeks when you can next be fit in.

    You'll die from an ear infection waiting for your prescription to be filled.

  • cminus

    @name, I need an appointment six weeks in advance to see my doctor now, and I've *got* private insurance coverage.

    You need to come up with an ACA horror story that is different from the horrors that the healthcare industry is currently serving up to the average citizen.

  • Typical DC BS

    @cminus - get off the HMO and into a real plan.

  • John

    Wow, more idiots who've never actually spoken to a person from a single payer country.

  • noodlez



  • Concerned Senior

    Who is that dude who is Wells' Campaign Manager?
    Talk about creepy. What's with the missing front teeth?
    Is it true he was also campaign manager for that weird dude John Ray?

  • Smh

    Replace LRAA with this bill.

  • truth hurts

    Agree with cminus. Our health care system is controlled by greedy insurance companies that care far more about profits than about our health. Doctors and patients alike suffer from the status quo.

    Wells' proposal seems like it would do a lot of good on a wide range of issues: increase in minimum wage, increase in personal income tax deduction, increased employee tax credits to businesses with incentives to for businesses to use those credits to subsidize their workers' medical insurance. If anyone other than Wells introduced these provisions, noodlez would probably support them.

  • Murph

    Increase tax credits for businesses, lower commercial property taxes, increase the standard deduction to $8K, after cutting DC sales tax.
    I understand that we've had one or two surpluses, but so did the US a decade ago... they don't last.

  • mizwillis

    Why is it SOME people tolerate character flaws in one man, but not in another? Marion Barry on his worst day would run intellectual circles around Tommy Wells on his best day.

    At first I thought SOME people didn't want to give Barry his due because if his personal problems. Then along comes another enlightened Black man in the same political position, and who doesn't have those personal challenges, and what do we see?

    Right out of the box: We see denigration of the strong and intelligent Black man who was most recently elected Mayor of this city. We see transplanted gentrifiers taking advantage of the system and attempting to manipulate the democratic processes.

    Yes, the newly arrived White people (And of course there are quite a few Black people in the group of which I speak), want not only to LIVE in DC, they want to CONTROL
    DC. Now this is something of which most people of color do not have a firm grasp. All some of us know is 'the White Man' this, and 'the White Man' that.

    According the their way of thinking, the 'White Man' is the cause of all of their troubles. And the 'White Man' just may be collectively and culturally responsible. It is incumbent upon people of color to continue the struggle of 'moving on up'.

    In the generations since the paradoxical abomination of slavery, the offspring of slaves have made tremendous progress. Know a red neck Tommy Wells when you see him. Do not allow his kind to be elected to any office in Washington, DC. Run his racist behind out of DC on a rail and send his alcoholic, red neck, gentrifing, conniving racist campaign manager with him.

    Well the 'White Man' is only doing what the 'White Man' does. He is futilely attempting to maintain that 'White' status and self promoted egocentric superiority perpetrated once he suddenly realized that he can only procreate his own kind with his own kind.

    Therefore, it is incumbent upon him to subjugate people of color in an effort to prevent the 'White WOMAN' from producing those beautiful little 'BROWN babies' with men of color and eventually wiping out his race.

    Now that is understandable. Self-Preservation is the very first law of nature. But that goes both ways. Men of color are also attempting preserve themselves.

    While attempting to get off of this soapbox, let me say: Can't we all just get along?'

  • Chris hauser

    Well, that's certainly food for thought.

    Walmartzilla eats Washington, and mr. Wells is saint George.

  • Gray is Awkward

    Wellzilla the Black Business Killa!!

  • Drez

    quit with the racist crazy talk. I'm not a Tommy fan but you make yourself a fool talking bs about "the white man".
    If you really feel that way, just fuck off and die already.

  • Drez

    "But you know, when I talk to Malia and Sasha and I listen to their friends and I see them interact, they’re better than we are. They’re better than we were on these issues. And that’s true in every community that I’ve visited all across the country."
    So let it be.

  • mizwillis

    Listen or read Drez:

    First of all you live this long you little ignorant a**- *********** and then we'll discuss whether or not it is time for me to die.

    How dare you use an Obama truism in an attempt to refer to exactly what the President is discussing as 'bs'. He is trying to tell you and all of the other intolerant miscreants that the newer generations will not tolerate, nor even acknowledge skin color when they interact with humankind. He is letting you know that the younger generation is better than we are. He didn't say YOU, or ME, he said THEY. He has seen this in all communities he's visited throughout the country.

    That does not negate the fact that there is a NEED for such optimism on his part and on the part of all other citizens of the United States. If the NEED was not there, the truism would not have been NEEDed.

    The fact that you cannot accept the fact that Adrian Fenty lost the election he probably didn't want in the first place; the fact that Ronald Machen has not found reasonable cause to bring charges against the man who BEAT THE HELL out of your man; and the fact that you flip flop on this blog like a fish on a hook is indicative of the fact that it is you who makes yourself look like a fool.

    To be honest, I think your experience with homelessness has affected your ability to think clearly. I get it: Yes you do have the right to your thoughts, BUT SO THE **** DOES EVERYBODY ELSE IN THIS COUNTRY.

    'Let it be'?????? 'Let it be'?????


    We already know you're not for Tommy Wells. You're still voting for Fenty. Go back and read what I said about the 'White man' and the 'Black man too for that matter. Better still don't go back and read it. JUST GO!!!!!!!!!!

  • Drez

    You are so caught up in your own head and misinformed of what I think or why I think it that you can't even craft a lecture that is on point. "Intolerant miscreants". LOL.

    In any event, your guy Gray is obviously a crook. Obviously. So, yeah, I don't think he deserves to be Mayor. That's about the only thing you do understand about where I'm coming from.

    I do agree with your assessment that there is a need for optimism. In discussing these matters I also wish you would not bring your own biases- fairly earned through a long life- into the discussion. But I suppose that is inevitable for anyone.

  • mizwillis

    MY GUY Gray was elected Mayor of this city.
    If OUR GUY Gray was so obviously a crook, he would have been obviously charged with a crime and removed from office
    by now.

    Until that happens, MISCREANT, and until the day I DO die, it is my ambitious objective to understand that it is futile to debate with one who does not understand his own lack of insight.


    And if by chance you do live long enough reach my ripe old age, I hope you will gain some form of wisdom and gain some insight. If nothing else, accept the fact that there is only one alternative to aging so if your plan is to exercise that option know that successful aging ain't easy. It requires quite a bit of insight.

  • mizwillis

    ........exercise the aging option.

  • Anon2

    I know of no evidence (beyond the state of his birth) to indicate CM Wells is a racist.

    Mayor Gray has done a better job than many expected. I certainly hope that if there is no evidence to charge him with a crime, that this is clarified soon, so he can run without a cloud.

    Meanwhile this bill answers many of the criticisms raised againt the LRAA.

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  • joan

    Tommy Come Lately - perhaps he should have come forward with his own proposal sometime before the Council's final vote.

  • mizwillis

    @anon: With all due respect to your premise, Black people who have been around Mr. Wells have more than enough evidence of his racist nature. He has only attempted to control his tendencies since deluding himself into thinking he can hide them.

    I won't bore you with proven examples because they will come to light at the proper time. Wells has quite a few dirty little secrets that will come to light in due time.

  • Pingback: Wells Plan Not a “Living Wage for All,” But Minimum Wage Boost Still a Good Step | Poverty & Policy

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