Oklahoma Gov. Fallin Signs Bill Banning Minimum Wage Increases by Cities

Thursday, April 17, 2014
Gov. Mary Fallin (AP Photo)

Cities in Oklahoma that want to increase the minimum wage within their jurisdictions no longer can do so, under a law approved Monday by Republican Governor Mary Fallin.

The legislation also bars municipalities from imposing vacation and sick-day requirements on employers.

 

Fallin and Republicans in the legislature claim that having different minimum wages throughout the state would not help the economy. The governor added that increasing the minimum wage would only hurt businesses and lead to employees being laid off. She insisted most workers would not benefit from a minimum wage hike.

 

“Most minimum-wage workers are young, single people working part-time or entry-level jobs,” Fallin said in a statement. “Many are high school or college students living with their parents in middle-class families.”

 

According to the Pew Research Center, only 24% of those at or below the federal minimum wage are ages 16 to 19, those most likely to be living with their parents. Almost half, 49.4%, are older than 24.

 

Critics said the bill was intended to circumvent an effort in Oklahoma City, where signatures are being gathered to put an initiative on the city ballot raising the minimum wage to $10.10. That is the level to which President Barack Obama seeks to raise the federal minimum wage.

-Noel Brinkerhoff

 

To Learn More:

Oklahoma Governor Signs Minimum Wage Hike Ban (by Bailey Elise McBride, Associated Press)

Mary Fallin Signs Ban On Minimum Wage Increase (by Shadee Ashtari, Huffington Post)

Cities Banned from Setting Minimum Wage Standards (by Randy Ellis, The Oklahoman)

As Congressional Republicans Block Raising Minimum Wage, States Take Over (by Steve Straehley, AllGov)

3 of 4 Americans Approve of Raising Minimum Wage (by Noel Brinkerhoff and Danny Biederman, AllGov)

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