Welcome to the first edition of Homebase’s weekly news roundup. Check back each Monday for up-to-date headlines pertaining to local business owners, hourly employees, and more. Here are the top trending headlines for this week. 

Chipotle Offers One Extra Month of Pay

Chipotle Mexican Grill is working through the current struggle of attracting new employees by offering a new quarterly bonus program. Under the new program, hourly workers can receive a bonus equal to one week’s worth of pay each quarter if they meet certain criteria and if their restaurant hits a certain sales goal for the quarter. 

The program would allow employees to earn up to an extra month of pay and is in addition to the company’s standing benefits such as tuition reimbursement, paid lunches, and competitive benefits.

New Jersey Minimum Wage Increases to $10 an Hour

The State of New Jersey began their five-year plan to phase in a $15 minimum hourly wage today by increasing the current minimum wage to $10 an hour. The increase is a 13 percent hike from the previous minimum hourly wage of $8.85. 

Starting January 1, 2020, the rate will increase to $11 an hour before making its way to $15 an hour by January 1, 2024.

Study: Hourly Workers More Likely to Reject Jobs Due to Location Rather Than Pay

A recent study found that job seekers looking for hourly positions are more likely to turn down a role if it comes with a hefty commute rather than low pay. 

The study looked at 10,000 rejected job offers and found that 38 percent of the offers were turned down because of location, and 10 percent of them were turned down because of the wages. Although both reasons were in the top five list for rejecting a job, location was listed as number one and pay was listed as number four. 

Dunkin’ Drops Franchisees for Not Verifying Employee Eligibility

Dunkin’ (formerly known as Dunkin’ Donuts) is cracking down on franchise owners who are not properly verifying employees by suing to stop the franchisees from operating and take over the restaurants. 

The company has filed at least three lawsuits in federal court against several franchisees who operate more than two-dozen restaurants for not using the mandatory E-Verify system to ensure that workers are documented. The lawsuits came about after Dunkin’ found violations and then terminated the operators’ franchise agreements.