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Wheeling joins movement to opt-out of new Cook County employer mandates


WHEELING - Monday night, the northwest suburban village board of Wheeling listened to local business owners and chose to opt out of two ordinances being imposed upon employers by the Cook County Board.

The two mandates the board rejected imposing on business owners would raise the required minimum wage to $13 per hour and force employers to provide full- and part-time employees with 40 hours each year of paid time off.

Wheeling is the 11th municipality in Cook County thus far that has chosen to exercise home rule authority concerning the county's two latest ordinances affecting employment arrangements. Other villages that have also opted out include Barrington, Oak Forest, Mount Prospect, Rosemont, Tinley Park, River Forest, Schaumburg, Palos Park, Elmwood Park, Streamwood and Elk Grove Village will be shortly finalizing their vote on the measure.

ThDaily Herald reports: 

Local business owners spoke out against the proposed wage hike at the village board meeting last week, warning the changes could hurt job growth and force companies to move to nearby Lake County.

Village President Dean Argiris said adopting the county ordinances would create unfair competition between local businesses and employers in collar counties.

"It is our firm belief that these issues should be mandated through federal and state legislation, not the county," Argiris said.

The Technology & Manufacturing Association has been actively encouraging its members to express their thoughts about the Cook County mandates to their local officials. 

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