Legislation that would raise the minimum wage in Montgomery County by 2020 passed the country council by a 5-4 vote on Tuesday, January 17. If approved by the County Executive, Montgomery County would become the first jurisdiction in Maryland to mandate a $15 minimum wage.
In response NFIB Maryland State Director, Mike O’Halloran released the following statement, “Every time lawmakers make it more difficult to hire additional people, Marylanders lose. To impose a mandatory wage hike as staggering as $15 an hour is downright irresponsible. The small business community simply cannot afford to sustain existing jobs, never mind create new ones when they cannot afford the wages. The weight of paying new, oftentimes inexperienced workers a $15 minimum wage coupled with workers currently making $15 per hour who will no doubt expect a raise, is enough to crush the small business community in Montgomery County. The minimum wage rate was never intended to feed entire families or sustain someone over a lifetime. It was created as an entry level, starting point, for young and inexperienced workers. Today the Montgomery County Council acted in a way that will deter job growth and stifle economic improvement for its residents.”
The future of the legislation is uncertain due to trepidation from County Executive Isiah Leggett who is concerned the mandate would put too much of a burden on small businesses and would put the county at a disadvantage for attracting new businesses. If he vetoes the bill, six votes would be required to override his veto.
In an attempt to ease concerns, the council agreed to delay the start date of the wage hike to 2022 for business with less than 25 employees. However, it’s unlikely that this would help save jobs. Cities that have passed a $15 minimum wage are already seeing a negative impact. In Washington, D.C. a study reported that over one-third of businesses plan to cut staff or cut hours because of the $15 minimum wage. A Dunkin’ Dounuts franchise in Montgomery County has been vocal about being forced to cut 130 jobs if the wage hike passes.
TAKE ACTION: Please respectfully contact County Executive Isiah Leggett and ask him to veto the $15 minimum wage legislation and explain what impact this wage hike would have on your business. phone 240-777-0311 | email
Please Thank the Council Members who Voted Against Raising the Minimum Wage
- Sidney Katz (D-Gaithersburg-Rockville) email | phone: 240-777-7906
- Council President Roger Berliner (D-Potomac-Bethesda) email| phone: 202-777-7828
- Nancy Floreen (D-At Large) email: [email protected] | phone: 240-777-7959
- Craig Rice (D-Upcounty) email | phone: 240-777-7955
Council Members Who Voted in Favor of raising the Minimum Wage
- Council member George L. Leventhal (D-At Large)
- Marc Elrich (D-At Large)
- Hans Riemer (D-At Large)
- Tom Hucker (D-Eastern County)
- Nancy Navarro (D-Mid-County)