State Rep. Gail K. Hamm (D-East Hampton, Middletown) issued a statement today (April 26) praising the approval by the House of Representatives of legislation that would increase Connecticut’s minimum wage.
“Raising the minimum wage increases consumer spending on Main Street,” said Rep. Hamm. “Increasing the minimum wage can be a boon to our state’s economy, boosting economic security and opportunity for tens-of-thousands of hard-working Connecticut citizens,” she said.
If approved by the Senate, House Bill 5291 would raise Connecticut’s minimum wage by 50 cents to $8.75 per hour in two steps.
The minimum wage would increase from the current rate of $8.25 to $8.50 on Jan. 1, 2013, and then to $8.75 on Jan. 1, 2014. The legislation also includes minor adjustments to the minimum wage for restaurant wait-staff and bartenders who receive tips.
Although the minimum wage has been raised seventeen times since 1979, it has effectively decreased by 11 percent when adjusted for the cost of living.
“A single parent of three making the current minimum wage will only earn $17,160 working full time – far below the federal poverty threshold of $22,190,” said Rep. Hamm.
A recent Quinnipiac poll indicates that 70 percent of Connecticut residents support raising the minimum wage.
Rep. Hamm stated that 106,000 workers in Connecticut earn minimum wage, “almost 7 percent of our entire workforce.”
“Connecticut residents recognize these hardworking individuals need a raise,” she said.
The bill now goes to the State Senate for consideration.
Rep. Hamm is in her 7th term serving the 34th House District in East Hampton and Middletown.
Posted April 26, 2012
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