House Approves Minimum Wage Increase, Defeats Small Business Exemption
The House voted 281-144 Thursday (5-23) to approve a 90-cent raise in the minimum wage, rejecting a Republican proposal to exempt small businesses from paying the minimum wage and overtime. Fifty cents of the increase would go into effect July 1, with the remaining 40 cents to follow a year later, eventually bringing the minimum wage to $5.15 and hour up from $4.25. Democrats had been fighting to raise the minimum wage, and President Clinton had criticized Republican attempts to exempt the nation's 3 million small business from wage requirements. Of those earning the minimum wage, 63 percent are women.
Media Resources: The Nando Net and Associated Press - May 23, 1996; The Washington Post - May 23, 1996