Massive Restaurant Now Raises Minimum Wage to $20 in California

A massive restaurant now raises its minimum wage to $20 in California after a political firestorm spread, sources report.

So far, a Panera Bread franchise owner in California said he will raise the minimum wage for his employees after accusations he benefited from ties to the state’s governor to avoid hiking pay.

A new state minimum wage law exempts certain businesses that make and sell bread – a carveout that critics contended benefited Greg Flynn, a billionaire Panera franchise owner who attended high school with Democratic California Gov. Gavin Newsom and who has donated to the governor’s campaign in the past.

The law, which takes effect on April 1, raises the minimum wage from $16 per hour to $20 for all fast food workers — except those working in businesses that produce and sell bread as a standalone menu item.

It’s that exception that’s driving the political accusations, says CNN.

Both men have denied Flynn’s influence over the new law, per the outlet.

On Tuesday, Flynn told CNN that he has decided to raise the minimum pre-tip wage at all of his Panera Bread locations to $20 per hour, regardless of whether his fast-casual bakeries are exempt from the new minimum wage law or not.

“At Flynn Group, we are in the people business and believe our people are our most valuable assets,” Flynn said.

“Our goal is to attract and retain the best team members to deliver the restaurant experience our guests know and love.”

According to California public records, Flynn, whose company, The Flynn Group, has 24 Panera locations in California, donated several times to Newsom’s 2022 re-election campaign and gave $100,000 in 2021 amid a conservative fight to recall the governor.

However, Flynn said he never personally met with Newsom about the minimum wage bill, though he did meet with Newsom’s staff and a group of other restaurant owners to discuss it.

“I suggested the bill’s language defining ‘fast food restaurant’ should be amended to exclude fast casual restaurants,” Flynn said in a statement last week.

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Also Read: Clothing Retailer Now Makes Painful Decision To Close All Stores

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Market News Today - Massive Restaurant Now Raises Minimum Wage to $20 in California.
Market News Today – Massive Restaurant Now Raises Minimum Wage to $20 in California.

A beloved retailer with 850 stores will now file bankruptcy in days after launching a massive liquidation sale, sources report.

The revelation comes days after a Joann store in Ohio launched a 90% off closing-down sale, reports The-Sun.

The fabric and craft specialty retailer has about 850 outlets across about 50 states.

But its bosses are currently considering lodging a bankruptcy filing as soon as next week, claimed Bloomberg.

Joann is currently looking into entering a special deal with lenders to help it shed spiraling debt.

Secret talks are underway to see whether the firm can get extra capital to help shore up cash reserves, the business website added, citing unnamed sources.

The news comes days after Joann’s Wooster store in Ohio held a massive 90% off sale, including sewing patterns for $1.99.

The outlet closed on February 21, one month after the shuttering of the Joann’s Zanesville branch in the same state, said local Fox affiliate WJW.

Both the closures and bankruptcy fears follow months of discussion among shoppers on social media about the Hudson-based retailer.

A shopper wrote on Facebook, “Sad news if Joann fabric closes, but they shouldn’t have resorted to cheapening the quality of their fabric for one thing.”

And another woman commenting on the Bloomberg story about Joann planning a bankruptcy filing added, “Wow, they just opened one [store] here in La Habra, California in October 2023.”

Here’s what Credit Risk Monitor had to say:

“No two public companies are cut from the exact same cloth, yet the telltale signs of potential bankruptcy shown by craft retailer JOANN Inc. are universal: lots of leverage, recurring net losses, and negative free cash flow,” warned CreditRiskMonitor last December.

Joann has struggled amid a challenging environment for retailers, said Moody’s Investors Service.

The chain was established in 1948, and offers both online and in-store shopping.

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Also Read: 68 Essential Stores Are Now Closing in Pennsylvania

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Market News Today - Massive Restaurant Now Raises Minimum Wage to $20 in California.
Market News Today – Massive Restaurant Now Raises Minimum Wage to $20 in California.

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