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Minimum wage initiative petitions approved by Kander


JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – Missouri Secretary of State Jason Kander determined Wednesday that seven initiative petitions regarding minimum wage increases met the qualifications for circulation around the state.

The seven petitions vary in the amount they would raise the minimum wage. Should they make the ballot in 2016, and be verified as law in 2017, they would all immediately set the minimum wage to $9.00 per in Missouri, up $1.35 from its current rate of $7.65 per hour.

After that, the petitions vary, each one adding one dollar per year for a certain number of years. Initiative petition 2016-69, for example would raise the minimum wage by a dollar a year until 2022 to make the final minimum wage $14.00 per hour while initiative petition 2016-072 would only see the yearly increase until 2019 for a final minimum wage of $11.00 per hour.

Each petition also adds stipulations increasing the minimum wage based on changes in the Consumer Price Index beginning in 2020, mandate that state minimum wage at least matches the federal rate, increase the employer portion paid to tipped employees from 50 to 100 percent of minimum wage and increase the penalty for employers who pay less than minimum wage.

Lara Granich, director of Missouri Jobs with Justice, submitted all of the petitions.

For an initiative petition to placed on the ballot, proponents of the measure will have to collect signatures from at least five percent of voters from the 2012 gubernatorial election from at least six of the state’s eight congressional districts. Those signatures will have to be on Kander’s desk by May 8, 2016.