July 11, 2017
The Honorable Eric Greitens
State Capitol Building, Room 216
Jefferson City, MO 65101
Dear Gov. Greitens:
You recently announced you will neither sign nor veto HB 1194, legislation that essentially nullifies a St. Louis City ordinance that currently sets the local minimum wage at $10 an hour, thus rolling back the minimum wage to the state rate of $7.70 an hour. As a result, the bill will automatically become law on July 15 and smack minimum wage workers with a 23 percent pay cut when it takes effect on Aug. 28.
Your decision to do nothing in this instance is the cowardly dodge of a professional politician who hopes to have it both ways. Based on your own comments, you clearly don’t like the idea of higher pay for low-wage workers. But it is just as clear that you know cutting wages for thousands of St. Louis workers is wrong and you hope that by letting HB 1194 become law without your signature you can avoid responsibility for the harm it will cause.
It won’t work. You have the power to veto HB 1194. If you choose not to exercise it, every St. Louis worker who sees a massive cut in their paycheck come Aug. 28 will know Eric Greitens made it possible and your talk of creating jobs and improving pay will be exposed as nothing more than empty words.
You still have a few days to do both the courageous and right thing and veto HB 1194. I strongly urge you to take this opportunity before it slips away.
State Rep. Gail McCann Beatty
House Minority Leader