LANSING, MI (WTVB) - The Michigan Senate has approved a hike in the minimum wage that has democrats climbing on board and some republicans backing off although 16th District State Senator Bruce Caswell voted yes on the measure. The bill would hike the minimum from the current $7.40/hr. to $9.20/hr, and index it to the cost of living so it would automatically adjust for inflation. It would also raise the minimum for tipped workers from $2.65 to $3.50/hr.
Sponsor Senator Randy Richardville says the version headed for the ballot this fall is poorly drafted and too expensive. It’s getting praise from Democratic gubenatorial candidate Mark Schauer who is urging the Governor to sign it. However, as it heads to the House a spokesman for Speaker Jase Bolger says it contains provisions they have “grave concerns about”. All but two Senate Democrats voted for it, while half the republicans, including west Michigan Senators Tonya Schuitmaker and John Proos voted against it.