2/12/2014 4:47 PM
by Stuart Hammer
CHARLESTON - The West Virginia House of Delegates is set to vote on a proposal to increase the minimum wage by $1.50 by 2016.
The increase would occur in steps. The standard would change from $7.25 to $8 an hour in January 2015 and to $8.75 the following January. The state minimum wage last increased in 2008 and matches the federal standard.
The House is scheduled to vote on the bill Wednesday.
A counterpart Senate bill has at least one more committee stop. The Senate version would bump the minimum wage to $7.85 per hour in July 2014, and $8.25 the following July. Afterward, the rate would increase each year based on the Consumer Price Index.
Delegate Linda Sumner of Raleigh County says the bill will have a significant impact on West Virginia.
"We need to keep needing jobs and to move our economy forward. And people also have to have money, and to put it back into the economy."
Lawmakers in at least 30 state legislatures have introduced minimum wage increases.