Connecticut Governor expected to sign minimum wage hike

MILFORD, Connecticut Thu Mar 27, 2014 11:52am EDT

Connecticut Governor Dannel Malloy (R) offers a rebuttal regarding remarks made by Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal following a National Governors Association event hosted by U.S. President Barack Obama at the White House in Washington February 24, 2014. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

Connecticut Governor Dannel Malloy (R) offers a rebuttal regarding remarks made by Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal following a National Governors Association event hosted by U.S. President Barack Obama at the White House in Washington February 24, 2014.

Credit: Reuters/Kevin Lamarque

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MILFORD, Connecticut (Reuters) - Connecticut Governor Dannel Malloy plans to sign into law on Thursday a measure that will phase in the highest minimum wage of any U.S. state, in line with a national Democratic push to raise the entry-level wage.

The measure, which was approved by legislators a day earlier, would raise the state's minimum hourly rate to $10.10 per hour, a figure that matches what U.S. President Barack Obama has asked Congress to consider imposing nationally.

Malloy will sign the bill Thursday at 6 p.m. in the same New Britain diner, Café Beauregard in the heart of what is known as the "hardware city," where he appeared earlier this month with Obama and three other New England governors: Deval Patrick of Massachusetts, Peter Shumlin of Vermont and Lincoln Chafee of Rhode Island. All are Democrats who have pushed to raise the minimum wage in their states.

New Britain, located in the center of the state, has been hard hit by the economic downtown with the household median income at about $35,000, compared with the state's nearly $66,000

"This modest increase will give working families a boost, and it will contribute to our economy by getting just a little more money into the pockets of people who spend it in their communities," Malloy said following the bill's legislative approval late Wednesday.

Advocates of raising the minimum wage argue that doing so will improve the standard of living of working families and help to close the gap between the average earnings of men and women. Opponents warn that it could slow job creation or even lead companies to lay workers off at a time when the U.S. economy is struggling with high unemployment.

Obama's call for a higher national minimum has not gotten backing in the Republican-controlled U.S. House of Representatives.

Connecticut's minimum wage currently stands at $8.70 per hour, and the bill will be phased in to $10.10 over three years. The current highest state minimum wage in the United States is Washington's $9.32, above the $7.25 federal minimum.

Malloy is up for re-election this year and state Republicans have called the measure a politically influenced move.

(Editing by Scott Malone and Gunna Dickson)

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Comments (5)
SunnyDaySam wrote:
‘Obama’s call for a higher national minimum has not gotten backing in the Republican-controlled U.S. House of Representatives.’

That’s because the GOP Only represents the wealthy and big Corporations. If you disagree, name one thing they’ve done for the Average American.

Mar 27, 2014 1:03pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
4825 wrote:
Personal income in Connecticut was $58,908 average per person in 2013. That is number one in the nation. Raising the states minimum wage rate from $8.70 to $10.00 over a three year period does not do much when most of the folks there are way above that number now. So let’s all give the governor a big hand for doing, well not much. Sounds good for votes though, right?

Mar 27, 2014 1:47pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
SunnyDaySam wrote:
4825 wrote: ‘So let’s all give the governor a big hand for doing, well not much. Sounds good for votes though, right?’

Ok, paid poster, tell us this: what, exactly have the Republicons done. At all, for the Average American, I mean. Nothing.

Mar 27, 2014 2:13pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
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