Maryland Considering $15 Minimum Wage Starting In October, Olszewski Voices His Support
BALTIMORE COUNTY - On Monday, Maryland Governor Wes Moore encouraged lawmakers to increase the minimum wage to $15 this year rather than waiting until 2025 and allow annual increases to account for the rising cost of living.
This is not Maryland's first foray into minimum wage increases. In 2019, the General Assembly passed a bill to raise the minimum wage to $15 by 2025. Then-Governor Larry Hogan vetoed that bill; the veto was later overridden by the General Assembly, passing the bill into law.
On January 1, 2022, Maryland's minimum wage rose from $12.20 to $12.50 an hour. By January 1, 2023, the minimum wage reached $13.25, and it is scheduled to reach $14 by January 1, 2024.
Moore's plan would raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour starting October 1, 2023. Beginning on July 1, 2025, future increases would be tied to inflation (up to 5%).
There are two scenarios where the minimum wage would not increase. If annual net inflation was zero or negative, and/or if the six-month change in net employment is negative, the state's Board of Public Works could temporarily suspend an increase for one year.
Cost of living adjustments (COLAs) are becoming a trend among state legislatures. According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, 18 states have passed measures similar to the one being considered in Maryland.
WBAL reports that Del. Jesse Pippy, Republican House minority whip, questioned whether or not the measure would impact Maryland's attractiveness as a business destination.
"I think we have the same goals, but I'm concerned, I think with some of my colleagues here, that the indexing of the minimum wage could make it less attractive for an employer to want to be here, to want to do business here," Pippy said.
Among the bill's supporters is Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski, who noted that Baltimore County raised the minimum wage to $15 for all county employees.
The outcome of this bill is still being determined, but it is clear that Governor Moore has made the minimum wage increase one of his main priorities. His proposed budget contains $413 million to pay state contractors if the wage increase takes effect this year.
Johnny Cliche on the scene with another worthless, no thought response. Does this guy say anything that isn’t a canned response? He needs to resign immediately. He has no idea what is really going on.