Nicole Rice

Senate approves minimum wage bill

By Nicole Rice, Policy Director, Government Relations

Capitol Update, June 12, 2015

Senator Mark Leno’s (D-San Francisco) minimum wage bill was approved by the State Senate last week and now moves to the Assembly for consideration. The bill passed with all but three Democrats supporting the measure.

SB 3 imposes a 63 percent increase in the state minimum wage over the next three years by raising the wage for all industries in two stages – $11/hr in 2016 and $13/hr in 2017. It also mandates that future increases be tied to inflation and allows local jurisdictions to adopt higher wage thresholds.

Senator Leno defended his proposal on the Senate Floor by pointing out that since the $9/hr increase was enacted last July (AB 10 - Chapter 351, Statutes of 2013), California’s unemployment rate has fallen dramatically, contradicting the predictions that an increase in the minimum wage will result in massive layoffs. He also proclaimed that California needs to get to $13/hr as soon as possible in order to lift people past the federal poverty level. Immediately after the anticipated passage of SB 3, Senator Leno released a press statement declaring in part that, “Sub-poverty wages should not be legal in California.” CMTA continues to oppose this bill. 

Click here to view Senator Leno’s Press Release.  

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