Senate Republicans Vote ITL on SB 136 - Legislation to Raise the State Minimum Wage
Contact Name: Marina Altschiller
Phone: (603) 271-3207
CONCORD – Today, the Senate Commerce Committee voted ITL on SB 136 in a 3-2 vote down party lines. SB 136 sought to raise the state minimum wage in the years 2022-2023 to $10 per hour and thereafter to $12 per hour. This would have been the first increase to the state minimum wage in 14 years. Currently, New Hampshire’s minimum wage is dictated by the federal minimum wage, and is far below the minimum wage in all other New England states.
After the vote, prime sponsor Senate Democratic Leader Donna Soucy (D-Manchester) issued the following statement:
“Since 2010 the New Hampshire Legislature has let federal law dictate our state minimum wage. I would argue that as state elected officials, it is our job, not Washington’s, to determine what’s best for our workforce, our businesses, and our economy. There is a very real and understandable perception out there that we don’t value our workers the way other New England states do, as all of our surrounding states have minimum wages of at least $10.50 per hour. Granite Staters are crossing state lines to work in those states’ service industries to make a better living. My bill proposed a modest increase to the minimum wage, starting at just $10 per hour, which we heard from businesses is actually on the low end of the pay scale.
It’s time that we as a state recognize the dignity of our workforce and the value workers bring to our state. Now more than ever, as part of our economic recovery, is the time to increase the minimum wage. I am disappointed that my colleagues on the other side of the aisle don’t feel this is something we should prioritize as part of economic relief efforts.”