Legislation In Springfield Would Boost Minimum Wage To $10.65 An Hour

By aaroncynic in News on Oct 24, 2013 6:00PM

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Illinois state Rep. Arthur Turner.
Lawmakers in Springfield are moving forward with a push to increase the state’s minimum wage. State Rep. Arthur Turner introduced HB 3718 Tuesday which, if it becomes law, would ultimately increase the minimum wage in Illinois to $10.65 an hour by 2016. HB 3718 would first boost hourly wages by a dollar, to $9.25, beginning Oct. 1, 2014. After June 30, 2015, it would increase again to $10 an hour and would reach $10.65 an hour by July 1, 2016.

Eighty percent of the 400,000 minimum wage workers in Illinois are age 20 or older, according to Kimberly Drew, Policy Associate at Heartland Alliance and member of Raise Illinois, a coalition lobbying in favor of the legislation. Drew said “No one in Illinois should work full time and still struggle to feed their children or keep a roof over their head.” Drew added that the state’s minimum wage would be $10.75 an hour if it kept up with inflation.

The proposed legislation comes as support for a minimum wage hike seems to be growing. A similar bill, SB 68, proposed by state Sen. Kimberly Lightford is slowly making its way through the Senate.

Gov. Pat Quinn has also made the case for a $10 an hour minimum wage as part of his campaign. According to the Daily Herald, the governor touched on the issue at a recent breakfast sponsored by the Schaumburg Area Democrats. “If you work 40 hours a week, you shouldn't have to live in poverty,” Quinn said.