Senate-Chamber-California-State-CapitolCalifornia State Senate this Monday has passed the minimum wage bill of $11 per hour, which will be enforced by 2016 and another increase of $13 per hour by 2017. The bill by Democrat Senator Mark Leno has been passed in a 23-15 vote, and now waits for approval by the state Assembly.

This is not the first bill Senator Mark Leno has proposed that aims at diminishing the poverty of minimum wage workers. A similar bill passed the state Senate in 2013, making the minimum wage of $9 per hour.

Leno is concerned with the poverty rates in California and argues that a lot can be done so that the problem can have a solution. Most of the workers in Californian are adults which earn minimum wages and the business companies are using them and give then poverty wages, which means that the taxpayer subsidize the food and housing for the workers.

The measure comes because of the U.S. Census Bureau, which notes that the population of the state of California is 38 million and a quarter of that population is living in poverty and is mostly working force.

According to Reuters, Leno has stated that this bill of an increase to the minimum wage will be a serious benefactor to the economy. He said “Despite our recovering economy, millions of Californians, many of them children, continue to live in poverty. Full-time workers in this state should not be forced onto public assistance simply because they earn minimum wage.”

Leno’s bill is constructed in a way that allows the minimum wage to increase with the inflation rate in 2019, making it an annual increase. According to Reuters, the inflation rates have been hurting the workers pay rate and it has become a nationwide concern for the middle class. Seattle and Los Angeles have already taken measures and started implementing plans to raise the minimum wage to $15 per hour by 2020.

The bill was approved by Democrats in the state Senate, but opposed by the Republicans. The similar bill from 2013, failed to earn he approval of the state Assembly and be approved by the Governor Jerry Brown from the Democratic Party.

Even though the Republicans think that the measure will bring the economy’s recovery a few steps back, the increase in the wages of workers will bring families of four to spend their money in local shops on a daily basis, thus giving the economy a boost. With this bill will overcome the annual $18,000 without taxes, which makes the 75 percent of the federal poverty line. This new trend in American politics and Senator Mark Leno’s argument that it should be made illegal to pay sub-poverty wages in California, will make a foundation for future development and increase in the economy.


An avid reader, I consistently engage myself in the areas of current affairs and understanding of international relations, whilst at the same time, am interested in the area of economics and understanding the roles of economic concerns in the political economy. You can follow The Heralding on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest & Google+. Alternatively subscribe to our newsletter to be kept up to date with the latest articles on the Heralding.

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