St. Louis Public Radio News
2:09 pm
Wed April 9, 2003

IL Senators Vote to Raise Minimum Wage

Springfield, Ill. – Illinois State Senators voted Tuesday to raise the state's minimum wage from $5.15 to $6.50 an hour over the next two years.

The increase would apply to adults. The state's Labor Department would set the wage for people under 18. The measure's sponsor, Chicago Democrat Kimberly Lightford, says she could not get enough votes to impose the full increase all at once.

The phase-in passed 33-23 and now goes to the House. Opponents say it will cause "catastrophic" results for small businesses who may have to layoff workers.