Franchise owners set to discuss lawsuit after minimum wage hike passes

SEATTLE -- The International Franchise Association (IFA) plans to discuss what they call unfair and discriminatory rules tied to the Seattle minimum wage hike.

Non-franchise businesses with less than 500 employees have seven years to meet the new standard, while those with more than 500 employees have three years. Franchises – no matter the employee count – have only three years, even if a franchisee owns only one store employing a few workers.

Local Subway owner David Jones says it's not fair.

"We will have to raise our prices 75 cents-$1 a sandwich and the public will respond by not coming in as often which will ultimately hurt our bottom line," said Jones.

IFA leaders say they intend to sue to protect the 600 entrepreneurs, who own approximately 1,700 franchise establishments and employ 19,000 Seattle workers.

Seattle City C0uncilwoman Kshama Sawant feels franchises should be treated as big business.

"These are not your corner mom and pop stores.  The reality is big corporations are calling the shots and why should we feed that model? The model should be moving away from corporations and poverty wages," said Sawant.

We'll have more on this story on Q13 FOX News at 4:00 and 5:00.