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Connecticut Legislature Overrides Rell’s Veto of Minimum Wage Increase

The Hartford Courant reported today that the Connecticut General Assembly voted to override Governor Rell’s earlier veto of an increase in the Connecticut minimum wage.  Our minimum wage, one of the highest in the country, will now increase from $7.65 per hour to $8.00 per hour on January 1, 2009.  It will increase to $8.25 per hour on January 1, 2010.  This law is great news for the approximately 65,000 Connecticut workers who earn the minimum wage.  Governor Rell and the Republicans argued that increasing the minimum wage would cost Connecticut jobs.  This writer couldn’t disagree more.  If this argument (which by the way the Republicans make every time an increase is proposed) were successful, the minimum wage would never go up.

Christine Stuart of CT News Junkie reported, “After the vote in the Senate, Caliguiri said he met with the governor on Friday to inform her of his decision to vote against her veto. ‘I’ve taken a hard look at the data and I could not conclude that increasing the minimum wage would result in decreases in jobs.'”

Furthermore, Rell’s claim that this law will mainly affect college students and young adults is flawed for two reasons.  First, the minimum wage affects more workers than just those.  Second, this argument seems to trivialize the interests of young adults and college students.

If you earn the minimum wage, you should make sure that your employer gives you a raise on January 1.  Employers frequently fail to keep up with minimum wage increases.  Restaurant servers who earn the tip credit minimum wage will have their pay increased to $5.52 per hour.