Del. Senate approves increase in minimum wage

By Randall Chase, The Associated Pr 4:32pm, March 21, 2013 - Updated 10:45am, March 22, 2013
The state Senate has voted to raise Delaware's minimum wage by a dollar over the next two years.

The measure was approved on a 12-9 party-line vote Thursday. Sen. Bob Venables of Laurel the lone Democrat to vote against the bill.

The bill raises the current hourly wage from $7.25 to $7.75 on Jan. 1, 2014, and to $8.25 on Jan. 1, 2015.

Bill sponsor Sen. Bobby Marshall of Wilmington had initially proposed raising the hourly wage to $8 in July and to $8.75 in July 2014 but submitted a revised proposal Thursday.

"The bill that passed the Senate today recognizes certain concerns of our slow-moving economy in Delaware, but yet we recognize that those at the low-end of the income scale need the help for the basics in life, bread and butter and survival from day to day," says Marshall.

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Supporters say the higher wage will stimulate the economy and help low-wage families make ends meet.

Opponents argue that it lead to higher prices that will negatively affect low-wage earners and employers hiring fewer workers.

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