Missouri voters could be asked to raise the state's minimum wage to $8.25 an hour.
A group that backed a successful wage increase in the 2006 elections is now pushing to get the minimum wage issue back on the ballot in Missouri's 2012 elections.
An open-records request from The Associated Press shows that the minimum wage initiative already has been submitted to the secretary of state's office, which must approve a ballot title before supporters can begin gathering signatures.
Missouri House members have voted to cap the state's minimum wage at the federal rate. The legislation would essentially overturn a 2006 voter-approved law that lets Missouri's minimum wage rise above the federal level based on annual inflation. Proponents contend capping the minimum wage would help small business. They also say it could be difficult for Missouri businesses to compete if the state's minimum wage is higher than those of neighboring states. Critics defend Missouri's existing law and say legislators should not overrule a measure approved by the voters.
The Missouri House has given first-round approval to legislation that would prohibit the state's minimum wage from exceeding the federal rate.
In 2006, Missouri voters approved a ballot initiative that set the state's minimum wage at $6.50 an hour, and allowed future minimums to rise based on the rate of inflation. It now matches the federal level of $7.25 an hour.