Governor Hogan Vetoes $15 Minimum Wage Bill

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Maryland Governor Larry Hogan, a Republican has vetoed two notable pieces of legislation advanced by the Democratic controlled state legislature in both the House and Senate.

The Governor previously criticized the $15 minimum wage legislation, saying it would hurt “mom and pop businesses” and lead to the “elimination of 9,000 jobs for the very people who need them the most.” Republican State Senate Mary Beth Carozza of the Lower Eastern Shore proposed an amendment to the bill which would increase the minimum wage to just over 14 dollars an hour, with a slower incremental growth for small businesses.

Already one of the highest minimum wages in the region, State lawmakers passed the 15 dollar minimum wage bill on March 20. The 32-13 vote along party lines mean’t an incremental increase of less than a dollar a year over the next six years.

Governor Hogan proposed compromise legislation which he says would increase the minimum wage by two dollars to 12.10 an hour by the year 2022. He said an increase of this magnitude should only be implemented if neighboring states reached a combined average of 80% of the Maryland minimum wage.

The House and Senate has the opportunity to override the veto, and with a Democratic supermajority it may be likely. The 2019 legislative session ends on April 8.