Features, Municipal Government, National, New York

Kansas City Votes Symbolic Minimum-Wage Increase

August 15, 2017

By Steve Wishnia and Neal Tepel

Kansas, Mo.—Kansas City voters on Aug. 8 overwhelmingly approved a ballot initiative to raise the minimum wage to $10 an hour later this month—but the vote was likely symbolic, because of the new state law that bars local governments from setting a minimum higher than the state’s $7.70. The initiative, which won 69% of the vote, would have also brought the city minimum up to $15 in 2022. Supporters of a higher minimum are pursuing two avenues: petitioning for a 2018 ballot initiative that would raise the state minimum to $12 by 2023, and challenging the pre-emption law in the courts. “We are clear that we believe that the constitutionality of the Missouri legislature’s law is under question,” the Rev. Vernon Howard Jr. told the Kansas City Star. The city Law Department may decide to challenge the law as well, but Mayor Sly James, who opposed raising the local minimum, has said that a statewide ballot measure would be a more effective way of increasing wages. The state campaign’s backers include the Service Employees International Union, the Kansas City AFL-CIO, Stand Up Kansas City and Missouri Jobs with Justice.

Read more

August 15, 2017

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.