There's a worthwhile collection of interviews up at Eater Seattle. These are not hysterical business owners saying Seattle is going to be a steaming hole in the ground now that $15-an-hour has passed. These are business owners who work hard, who've made the city what it is, and who acknowledge that a bunch of things are going to have to change after last week's legislation and it's not going to be easy. That's true. Small-business owners face hard-to-imagine-if-you're-not-a-small-business-owner challenges every day, and now they're all facing what might be the challenge of their careers.
Brendan McGill says, "I'm supportive of livable wages and am honestly somewhat excited for this social experiment," but he also says, "I barely get paid $15 an hour" and "My concern is that someone who currently makes $40K/year and isn't affected by the wage hike won't be willing to start paying more." Jeremy Hardy says, "There was incredible anger generated by a series of callous, recession causing, big-bonused bad actors on Wall Street while the rest of us were falling into the recession abyss," but also says, "It falls somewhere between feeling sad and feeling betrayed that this grenade has been dropped on us." Small-business owners will bear the brunt of the hardship as we transition to a city where it's more expensive to do business—that's clear. Their perspective is important, they have a lot to lose, and they deserve to be heard.