Illinois lawmakers are considering a plan to increase the state minimum wage and let it rise automatically in the future. A Senate Executive Committee approved the plan 9-5 yesterday, but even bill sponsor Senator Kimberly Lightford says more work is needed before it could become law.
The current minimum wage in Illinois is $8.25 per hour. The bill increases that by about 50 cents a year until it reaches $10.55 matching the buying power of the minimum wage back in 1968, when it was just $1.60 an hour. After that, it would go up by the cost of inflation each year. Opponents say the increase would force businesses to cut hours and employees.