With no increase to Pa.’s minimum wage since 2009, Boyle reintroduces legislation to allow municipalities to raise their own minimum wage

HARRISBURG, March 23 – In an effort to work around lawmakers’ failure to enact a statewide minimum wage increase for more than a decade, state Rep. Kevin Boyle, D-Phila./Montgomery, has reintroduced a bill that would give municipalities the ability to raise their own minimum wage. 

“No one should be working 40 hours or more a week and still be unable to pay their bills, feed their family or make ends meet,” Boyle said. “But our failure to act in the legislature has put too many people who have a family to support in this predicament.  

“The impact of the coronavirus has only made matters worse,” Boyle continued. “It’s time that we give the hardworking people in Pennsylvania – like minimum wage earners who work in the hospitality industry and health care who were so important we deemed them ‘essential’ during this global pandemic – the dignity that comes with earning a living wage, and we can do that by giving municipalities the power to do what’s best for the people who live in their locale.” 

The 2006 amendment to Pennsylvania’s Minimum Wage Act prohibits individual municipalities from setting their own wages. Boyle said that prohibition is outdated and ignores the differences in the cost of living and other factors from one city or town to the next, and that’s why he has introduced this legislation to repeal that section of the 2006 act. 

“My legislation would give the local governments, including Philadelphia City Council, which know their residents best, the tools to create solutions that work best for their residents,” Boyle said. “What defines a living wage is the cost of living in a particular location, and my legislation would put the power in the hands of the local governments to adjust their minimum wage based on factors that affect people in their communities.”