Montgomery County Council approves minimum wage increase

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MONTGOMERY COUNTY, MD — Council approved a bill that will gradually increase Montgomery County’s minimum wage to $15 per hour by 2020.

Councilmember Marc Elrich was the lead sponsor of Bill 12-16 which increases the County’s minimum wage.

Increments for employers with more than 26 employees will go as follows: in 2018 the minimum wage will be $12.50, then the following year it will go up to $13.75 and by 2020 employees will be earning $15 per hour. For employers with less than 25 employees, the bill states that increments are smaller and these businesses will reach $15 per hour by July 1, 2022.

“With this increase, we make it clear that we believe that an honest day’s work should result in an honest day’s pay and not leave a working person mired in poverty,” said Councilmember Elrich. “Helping people lift themselves out of poverty benefits all of us.”

Five councilmembers voted for the amended bill, making Montgomery County one of the first jurisdictions in the nation to approve a $15 per hour minimum wage.

Councilmembers Tom Hucker, George Leventhal, Nancy Navarro and Hans Riemer were co-sponsors. Those four plus Marc Elrich voted to approve the amended bill. Councilmembers Roger Berliner, Nancy Floreen, Sidney Katz and Craig Rice voted against the amended bill.

The bill will head to County Executive Ike Leggett for his signature.

Last year, the District of Columbia signed a bill into a law increasing the minimum wage to $15 by 2020.

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