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Sponsor Of Montgomery County Minimum Wage Hike Reacts To D.C. Veto

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A bill that would raise the minimum wage to $12 lives on in Montgomery County.
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A bill that would raise the minimum wage to $12 lives on in Montgomery County.

D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray has vetoed a controversial living wage bill in the District, sending it back to the D.C. council, where supporters will try to override the veto. Just this week in neighboring Montgomery County, a similar bill that would raise the minimum wage to $12 an hour will soon be introduced.

Marc Elrich's initial response to Mayor Vincent Gray's veto was: "I think he made a big mistake."

As for whether the veto will have any effect at all on debate and negotiations on his bill, Elrich doesn't think so.

"We're taking a broader approach," Elrich says. "The number that I'm proposing is not quite as high."

Elrich's bill calls for a minimum wage of $12 per hour, lower than the $12.50 in the D.C. proposal. And unlike the D.C. measure, which targets workers at certain big-box retail stores, Elrich's would affect all jobs that are subject to federal minimum wage laws.

And while the D.C. bill was seen as a response to Walmart's plans to build up to six stores in the city, the retail giant already has one location in Montgomery County: in Germantown.

But just like the D.C. bill, Elrich believes Walmart won't like his proposal either.

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