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Minimum Wage Increase Helps Spur Zoo Price Hikes


Higher admission prices kicked in at the Sacramento Zoo with the start of the new year. 

General admission at the zoo is now $14.95, up from $11.75. Prices for kids went up about $2.00 to $9.95.

Zoo Director Kyle Burks says the price increases will help pay for higher operational costs and for improving animal welfare.

"Like renovating our great ape bedrooms," says Burks. "So the new chimp bedrooms and new bedrooms for the orangutans."

Also, expanding the lions' living quarters and finalizing design plans for a 4,500 square-foot bio-diversity center showcasing smaller animals.

Burks says the zoo also needs to meet the demands of increases in California's minimum wage.

"Like every other business in California, the increase in the minimum wage impacts the team that we're both providing salaries and benefits for here but also the cost that we have to provide for services," says Burks.

Such as companies that make animal feed.

Burks says this is the first annual price increase at the zoo in several years. The zoo employs more than 100 people and cares for more than 500 animals.


Steve Milne

Morning Edition Anchor & Reporter

Steve is the voice of Capital Public Radio News as anchor of Morning Edition and Insight. He covers stories on a wide range of topics including: business, education, real estate, agriculture and music. Steve also produced stories for CapRadio.org.   Read Full Bio 

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