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minimum wage

Lee County is one step away from finalizing an increase of the local minimum wage from $7.25/hour to $8.20/hour. Lee would become the fifth county in Iowa to hike the rate in the past 18 months, joining Linn, Johnson, Polk, and Wapello.

Facebook - Raise the Wage Lee County

An effort is underway in Lee County to increase the local minimum wage, which currently sits at $7.25/hour, the same as the statewide rate. Supporters say an increase would help hard-working people throughout the county.

Amanda Vinicky/Illinois Public Radio

Even though the race for Illinois governor is over, Gov. Pat Quinn and Gov.-elect Bruce Rauner continue to be at odds, this time over the minimum wage.

TSPR's Emily Boyer

Illinois Governor Pat Quinn stopped in Galesburg Wednesday to drum up support for raising the state's minimum wage.

Assessing The Minimum Wage Landscape

Jul 9, 2014

Despite Democratic majorities and a push from the governor, Illinois' legislative session adjourned without a bump in the minimum wage.

Lawmakers settled for putting a non-binding question on the November ballot asking if that's something voters want.

Part of the problem was that legislators from downstate -- from both parties -- were against a hike.

Andrew Biggs says it doesn't make sense to make sense to have a national, or even statewide, minimum wage. Biggs is a scholar with the American Enterprise Institute, a D.C. think tank that leans toward free enterprise.

"Poaching" Not In Blueprint For Illinois Job Growth

Jul 3, 2014

Illinois' economy was slow to feel the effects of the Great Recession, and has been slow to recover from it. The state's Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity is submitting a five-year plan to the General Assembly, with suggestions for business growth and more state spending.

Voters will get to weigh in on whether Illinois should raise its minimum wage for adults to $10 an hour. Gov. Pat Quinn approved the ballot question Sunday, and wasted no time campaigning on the issue.

The question is just advisory — lawmakers don’t have to heed the people’s advice — but supporters of the increase say they hope it’ll pressure reluctant legislators to go along.

Critics say this is a ploy to get more Democrats to the polls — since turnout tends to be lower in non-presidential election years.

The General Assembly finished its legislative session shortly after midnight Saturday, approving a billion-dollar road construction program.

Democrats started the session with an ambitious agenda: raise the minimum wage, boost college assistance for low-income students, maybe even change Illinois' flat tax into a graduated one. In the end, none of that happened.

401(K)2012 / Flickr Creative Commons

Nearly a quarter of the student body works part-time, up to 20 hours a week, for the university. The majority of those students make $8.25 an hour, the current minimum wage in Illinois.

 Two major Democratic initiatives are still short the votes needed to pass, at least in the House, as the General Assembly heads into the final stretch of its spring session.

    

How to deal with Illinois' income tax rate is arguably the biggest issue looming over Illinois politics.

TSPR's Emily Boyer

Republican U.S. Senate Candidate Jim Oberweis of Illinois has announced his support for raising the minimum wage, but only for those over the age of 26.

  House Speaker Michael Madigan says there is "strong support" in the chamber for a hike in Illinois' minimum wage. That's one of the big issues in the governor's race.

Businesses don't like it, but a plan to raise Illinois' minimum wage from $8.25, to $10.65 an hour, is before the General Assembly.

Advocates continue to try to drum up the necessary votes.

Flickr Commons / Markheybo

An economist predicts raising the minimum wage would hurt already poor job growth in Illinois.

Business Group Fighting Minimum Wage Hike

Mar 25, 2014
Rich Egger

The Galesburg Area Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors voted unanimously to oppose an increase in the state’s minimum wage from $8.25 to $10 an hour.

Like most Americans, I’ve worked minimum-wage jobs. As an adolescent and a young adult, I worked on a farm, in a grocery store, and for a carpenter, and co-workers weren’t all teens. A grouchy guy in his 40s who smoked unfiltered Camels and swung a hammer like it was a Stradivarius pounded nails alongside me; a single mom was head cashier, knew the supermarket better than the boss, and mothered bag boys as well as ran the register.

At each workplace, the employer would’ve paid less if they could have.