By John DeVour, Forbes
In response to powerful government union demands, California Gov. Jerry Brown signed Senate Bill 3 today, a measure hiking California’s minimum wage 50 percent in six years from $10-per-hour to $15. For the third of state, about 13 million people, this new experiment in central planning will devastate already weak local economies.
California’s cost-of-living index stood at 134.3% of the national average in 2015, meaning that, compared to the rest of the nation, rent, food and services taken together cost about 34% more. Most of this higher cost is driven by the state’s myriad regulations, fees and arcane permits required before building homes, office buildings or manufacturing facilities. By comparison, Texas, the second most populous state, had a cost of living index of 92.6 last year. On average, California is 45% more expensive than Texas.