In June, a group called Everett Deserves a Raise announced they were collecting signatures to get a ballot initiative to raise the Everett minimum wage starting July 1, 2025. The initiative would raise the minimum wage to $20.24 an hour and require offering qualified part-time employees additional available hours before hiring new employees. The proposed initiative is similar to the Renton and Tukwila initiatives, which were passed by voters.

In response, Raise the Wage Responsibly was formed last week and is proposing an alternative initiative, which balances the needs of employees and employers. The alternative ballot initiative is modeled off the Everett Deserves a Raise petition, but

  • includes a total compensation (tips, payment to medical benefits, and retirement plans) allowance to make up the difference between the state minimum wage and what would be the Everett minimum wage
  • treats franchises as independent businesses
  • changes some of the enforcement provisions to allow a right to cure and exhaustion of administrative remedies before a lawsuit can be filed
  • removes some of the more unreasonable compliance components

While minimum wage is the focus, the proposed alternative also requires an employer to offer additional hours to qualified part-time employees before hiring new employees.

You can find more information about this campaign at The campaign has until July 15 to gather enough signatures to qualify for the fall ballot. If you have questions, you can reach out to Director of Local and Federal Government Affairs John Lane at .