Davis hosts policy hearing on increasing state’s minimum wage

MUNHALL, Aug. 29 – State Rep. Austin Davis, D-Allegheny, today hosted a House Democratic Policy Committee meeting at the Munhall Borough Building.

Davis requested the hearing to discuss the state’s minimum wage, which remains lower than Pennsylvania's neighboring states of West Virginia, Maryland, New York, Delaware and New Jersey.

“I wanted to make raising the state’s minimum wage a priority and keep it at the forefront of my colleague's minds,” Davis said. “Most importantly, though, I wanted to discuss how the Commonwealth would benefit from raising the minimum wage to match the current cost of living.

“Today was constructive. We talked in-depth about how raising the minimum wage can empower working families, as well as create ladders of opportunity for them. We also heard from a number of panelists who concurred that it’s time to give working families a raise,” Davis said.

The committee heard testimony from the Pennsylvania Department of Labor & Industry; Darrin Kelly, president, Allegheny/Fayette Central Labor Council, AFL-CIO; Diana Polson, policy analyst, Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center; Bobbi Linskens, member, Restaurant Opportunities Center; James Conway, member, Restaurant Opportunities Center; Jeff Shook, associate professor, University of Pittsburgh of Social Work; LaSain Latimore, member, One PA; Jennifer Rafanan Kenney, acting executive director, Pittsburgh United; Dawn Plummer, executive director, Pittsburgh Food Policy Council; and Grace Johnson, member, SEIU Healthcare Pennsylvania.

This hearing is among a series being held across the state on House Democrats’ Plan4PA, focused on putting people first by growing good jobs, providing health care access, creating quality schools and providing training for jobs in a fair economy. More information about the plan is available at www.plan4pa.com and hearing materials are at www.pahouse.com/policycommittee.