It’s not only governors around the nation that are issuing edicts, imposing restrictions and otherwise getting their pound of flesh from small businesses, municipalities are doing their best as well. The City Council in Denver this week declined to pause the planned minimum wage increase in the Mile High City to $14.77 per hour effective January 1. Small business advocates had urged the council to delay the increase in response to the coronavirus shutdowns and restrictions on businesses. Mayor Michael Hancock and Councilor Robin Kniech (who sponsored the successful minimum wage increase bill in 2019) rejected the delay request citing instead financial relief and assistance programs for small businesses. In New York City, Council Member Antonio Reynoso introduced legislation to allow restaurants to make permanent and expand a previously implemented diner surcharge – but only if they agree to pay a $15-per-hour base wage to ALL employees. And that move comes on the heels of a restaurant relief fund being unveiled in Boston by the city and One Fair Wage, a sister non-profit of the radical Restaurant Opportunities Center (ROC), that makes payroll assistance available to restaurants – but only if they’re willing to commit to paying a $20 minimum wage to all employees by 2026! With friends like these . . .