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Thursday, April 24, 2008


The House of Representatives on April 23 rejected legislation to slash the base minimum wage for tipped workers to $2.13 an hour from the current $3.325 an hour. On the mostly party-line vote of 68-82, all Democrats opposed cutting the minimum wage while most Republicans supported doing so.

HB 1851 would have overturned part of a minimum wage ballot measure Missouri voters approved in 2006 with 76 percent support. The standard state minimum wage, which voters also increased and that currently stands at $6.65 an hour, would have been unaffected by the bill.

State Rep. Shannon Cooper, R-Clinton, added the wage reduction provision as an amendment to the bill. Supporters, including the restaurant industry, said the wage hike has proven too costly. Opponents of reducing the wage said it’s wrong to arbitrarily cut wages for tipped workers such as waiters and waitresses.

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