Illinois Minimum Wage Bill Moves Forward | NBC Chicago
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Illinois Minimum Wage Bill Moves Forward



    A plan to make Illinois' minimum wage the highest in the nation is heading to the Senate floor, but it could still see some changes before it's called for a vote.

    Legislation to raise the wage from $8.25 to $10.65 per hour over a three-year period passed a Senate committee by a 10-5 vote on Thursday.

    McDonald's Workers Rally For Higher Wages

    [CHI] McDonald's Workers Rally For Higher Wages
    Several buses full of protestors headed to McDonald's shareholders meeting Thursday to fight for less than minimum wage.
    (Published Thursday, May 23, 2013)

    The bill's sponsor, Sen. Kimberly Lightford, a Democrat from Maywood, said the measure would bring people out of poverty and make them less reliant on government assistance programs.

    "Do we want to continue to subsidize those that are actually working, or should the businesses that they work for pay them a living wage for the work that they do?" Lightford said.

    Chicago Fast-Food Workers Strike For Higher Pay

    [CHI] Chicago Fast-Food Workers Strike For Higher Pay
    Thousands of fast-food workers in 100 cities across the country walked off their jobs Thursday to fight for a minimum wage increase to $15 an hour. The nationwide protests stem from a campaign that started last year to show how difficult it is to live on the federal minimum wage. Nesita Kwan reports.
    (Published Thursday, Dec. 5, 2013)

    The issue is also a key component of Democratic Gov. Pat Quinn's re-election campaign, and President Barack Obama recently increased the minimum wage for federal government workers to $10.10 per hour. The federal minimum wage for the private sector is $7.25 per hour.

    Opponents say the increase could negatively affect workers by forcing businesses to cut jobs, especially for those between the ages of 16 and 24.

    "While there are some winners in this, there are unquestionably some losers, too," said Sen. Matt Murphy, a Republican from Palatine.

    Lightford said the proposal could see some changes before it's brought to the Senate floor for a vote. She said some groups want to decrease the teenager minimum wage, which is currently set at 50 cents below the minimum wage, and extend back the time when increases are phased in.