Arkansas House Rejects Bill To Scale Back Minimum Wage Hike

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — The Arkansas House has rejected a proposal to scale back a minimum wage increase that voters approved last year that would have exempted many teenagers from future pay hikes planned under the initiative.

The House Monday rejected by a 42-34 vote a proposal to exempt workers under the age of 19 from future increases promised under the voter-backed measure that gradually raises the state's minimum wage to $11 an hour by 2021. Arkansas' minimum wage increased from $8.50 an hour to $9.25 in January under the measure and is set to increase again to $10 next year.

The proposal would keep pay at $9.25 an hour for those exempted.

Republican Gov. Asa Hutchinson last month said he opposed the bill and another proposal to exempt small businesses and some nonprofits.

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