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1/28/2019 Sen. Raptakis to reintroduce bill tying minimum wage increases to CPI
Raptakis has introduced similar legislation for the past several years
STATE HOUSE – State Sen. Leonidas P. Raptakis (D-Dist. 33, Coventry, West Greenwich, East Greenwich) will be reintroducing legislation that ties any future increase in the hourly minimum wage to the Consumer Price Index of the Northeast Region.  Senator Raptakis introduced the same (2018-S 2246) last legislative session.

 “This proposal will provide wage raises that are needed by individuals earning minimum wage while ensuring that businesses are not overburdened with a dramatic increase that would cause financial hardship for our small businesses,” said Senator Raptakis.

Senator Raptakis believes the only responsible way to prepare employees and business owners for minimum wage increases is by linking the raise to certain economic data points such as the Consumer Price Index (CPI) for the Northeast region.  The CPI is determined by the United States Department of Labor Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers.

“I have never and I am not now arguing about the fairness of our state’s current minimum wage,” said Senator Raptakis. “We all know what the economy is like and how difficult it is for everyone to get by. The people doing minimum wage jobs — jobs that absolutely need to be done to keep many businesses going — need to earn a fair wage.”

“That being said, we must raise our minimum wage through careful analysis of our economic data.  Calculating the state’s minimum wage using federal economic data is the fairest way to ensure our workers and our small businesses are being treated equitably,” added Senator Raptakis.  “We should not be raising our minimum wage to mirror and compete with Connecticut and Massachusetts because their economies are quite different than Rhode Island’s.  We must take into account our business climate before we set what the minimum wage should be.”

For more information, contact:
Andrew Caruolo, Publicist
State House Room 20
Providence, RI 02903