Louisiana lawmakers vote against minimum wage hike

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Efforts to gradually raise Louisiana’s minimum wage of $7.25 per hour were unsuccessful as a proposed bill was rejected by a House committee on April 11, as reported by KPLC.


Currently, Louisiana adheres to the federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour, and the decision dealt a blow to efforts to establish a state minimum wage law. 


House Bill 431 aimed to set a state minimum wage starting at $10 per hour in 2025, rising to $12 in 2027, and reaching $14 in 2029.


Despite arguments for alleviating poverty and boosting consumer spending, the bill was rejected by a 10 to 5 vote.


Arguments for and against the Bill:

  • While some advocate for a balanced approach where wage increases match rising costs, others worry about the potential impact on various industries. 
  • Supporters argue that raising Louisiana’s minimum wage would enhance its competitiveness and stimulate the economy by providing more disposable income. 
  • This increase is seen as vital given the rising costs of essentials, aiming to reduce reliance on government aid. 
  • On the other hand, critics fear adverse effects on business owners, especially in sectors like accommodations and food services, which often pay minimum wage. 
  • Despite these concerns, many lawmakers and business leaders point out that numerous businesses already pay wages exceeding the $7.25 per hour minimum.

Additional Information:

  • Louisiana, among five states, hasn’t officially implemented its own minimum wage. 
  • The minimum wage in Louisiana has remained at $7.25 since July 24, 2009, marking approximately 15 years without an increase.
  • The bill’s outcome was expected given past trends of rejected bills, with one proposal aiming for a gradual increase to $12 per hour by 2026 and another suggesting $14 per hour by 2029.
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