Updated: 04/07/2014 5:18 PM
Created: 04/07/2014 7:15 AM WDIO.com
ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) - Minnesota's minimum wage would rise to $9.50 per hour within a few years and continue going up unless a governor's administration applied the brakes.
That's the outline of a deal announced Monday between leaders of the House and Senate. It could move through both Democratic-led chambers this week.
Minnesota's current minimum is $6.15 for large employers, though most workers qualify for a higher federal minimum. Minnesota's base rate hasn't gone up since 2005.
Lawmakers had generally agreed to hit the $9.50 mark in a series of steps beginning this summer. But House leaders insisted on raises tied to inflation starting in 2017. Top senators said they couldn't muster support for purely automatic increases.
By giving the governor veto power, future raises could be withheld if economic trouble hits.
While many people support the minimum wage change, some restaurant owners said tips should be counted as wages. The bill does not have a tip credit, and Grandma's Regional Manager told Eyewitness News last month that would hurt the industry.
"If it goes through without some recognition of tips as wages, there will be job loss," Tony Boen said. "That might mean moving us into technology such as iPod ordering, kiosk ordering."
Boen, who is on the board of the MN Restaurant Association, also said he does not support the automatic tie to inflation.
"Minimum wage is too important of an economic driver to leave on auto pilot," Boen said.
If you're wondering how this will play out, the bill would mean a raise to $8.00 in August 2014. It would go to $8.50 in August 2015. Then, it will go to $9.50 in 2016.
Small businesses with gross sales under $500,000 will be forced to raise the wage to $7.75 over the three-year period. That will also be the cap for workers ages 16 and 17.
(Copyright 2014 WDIO-TV, LLC. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)
Low Gas Prices, Fair Weather Means Smooth Thanksgiving Travel in Northland
The day before Thanksgiving is widely known as the busiest travel day of the year. Travelers were hitting the roads to spend the holiday with friends and family. In addition, gas prices are at the lowest levels of the year
Volunteers Prepare Huge DECC Thanksgiving Feast
Volunteers are preparing 2,400 pounds of turkey, 2,000 pounds of stuffing, and all the other fixings for the DECC's annual Turkey Day feast. It's a chance for hundreds of volunteers to give back.
Duluth Students Collect Thanksgiving Donations for CHUM
Students at St. Michael's School in Duluth have been collecting donations for a Thanksgiving food drive, and on Wednesday they took their donations to CHUM.
Duluth Schools: Working on Purchase Agreement for Central
A buyer has approached the Duluth School District, and wants to purchase the entire former Central High School property.
$1.8M Verdict Upheld in 'American Sniper' Case
A judge has rejected a request from the widow of "American Sniper" author Chris Kyle to order a new trial or toss a jury's verdict in favor of former Minnesota Gov. Jesse Ventura.