Greenhouse Owner Warns Minimum Wage Hike Will Hurt Small Business

A Leamington greenhouse owner is wondering where small businesses are suppose to find the money to pay for a jump in the minimum wages.

Ontario is raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour by 2019.

Jamie Diniro of Diniro Farms says at his 20 acre farm, it will mean an extra $300,000 in labour costs alone at this time next year.

He questions how small businesses are suppose to survive and wants the Ontario Liberals out.

"Kathleen Wynne just needs to step aside," says. "She has screwed up hydro, she screwed up natural gas, I just want to know why does Ontario have to try and save the whole world. Just go on, you are going to get your great pension get someone in there who wants industry and business to stay in Ontario."

Diniro says the labourers on his farm all work minimum wage.

"On average of 2,000 hours a year, it is huge money, I figure it will be about $300,000 just in labour costs let alone with Cap and Trade at $200,000. Every farm I would say in Essex County, not only farm, every small business from the McDonalds to the Tim Horton's, to a little mom and pop shop how are you going to afford to pay people $15/hour, we just can't do it."

Dinirio Farms employs more than 35 workers — all at minimum wage. He says cucumbers have been about 79 cents in the store for years and he doubts that people are going to pay more than three dollars for the same produce.

Back in February, Diniro spoke out after his natural gas bill more than doubled due to Cap and Trade.