SCRANTON - Officials in Pennsylvania's sixth-largest city said Thursday that they are unable to pay employees more than minimum wage despite a judge's order that they fulfill their contract obligations.
Mayor Chris Doherty's plan to pay nearly 400 employees no more than the $7.25-per-hour minimum wage stems from a political stalemate over how to resolve a massive cash shortfall in the city's operating budget.
Doherty told the Scranton Times-Tribune that he respected the opinion of Lackawanna County Court Judge Michael Barrasse, but that the city simply didn't have the money for the paychecks that it was supposed to hand employees on Friday. Earlier in the day, Barrasse granted an injunction sought by employee unions against Doherty's minimum-wage plan. A hearing on the case was scheduled for Friday.