$15 minimum wage passes for Maryland

(March 28, 2019—ANNAPOLIS, Md.) The celebration was short-lived. Yesterday, Governor Hogan vetoed HB 166/SB 280, “Labor and Employment – Payment of Wages – Minimum Wage (Fight for Fifteen)”. Today, it was announced that the House overrode the veto on a 96-43 vote; the Senate did the same with a 32-15 vote.

In his veto message, the governor noted that he was, “extremely concerned that a dramatic and geographically disproportionate increase in our minimum wage will negatively impact our competitiveness and harm our state’s economy.”

He also expressed concern that allowing this legislation to become law will result in the clearly unintended but foreseeable consequence of, “consign(ing) tens of thousands of vulnerable Maryland citizens to unemployment.”

Unfortunately, despite all the objections, concerns, and personal experiences that many of Maryland Chamber’s members noted in their testimony before the General Assembly, both the House of Delegates and the Maryland Senate voted to override the Governor’s veto and make this the law of Maryland, effective June 01 of this year.

Vice President of Government Affairs Larry Richardson said, “The Maryland Chamber wants to thank all its members for the effort, sacrifice, and dedication put forth throughout this fight to save Maryland jobs, Maryland employees, and Maryland businesses. While it may not seem like it at this moment, please rest assured your presence in Annapolis – your voice & your efforts – DID have an impact. Not in a long time has business, especially small business, drawn the attention of the General Assembly as your presence on this issue did. That said, we have work to do.  The worst thing we as Maryland business can do now is meekly accept this fate.”

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