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Minimum Wage Bill Fails In House

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The Wyoming Legislature
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A bill to raise the minimum wage in Wyoming failed in the House of Representatives on Tuesday. House Bill 140 would have raised Wyoming’s minimum wage to the federal level of $7.25 an hour.

Wyoming has the lowest minimum wage in the country at $5.15 an hour. When Cheyenne Representative Jim Byrd first introduced the bill in the House Labor, Health and Social Services Committee, he proposed raising minimum wage to $9.50 an hour.

Opponents to the bill said minimum wage raises shut down small businesses and put people out of work. However, Byrd is a small business owner himself and said that paying his workers $10 an hour hasn’t put him out business.

 The original bill brought to committee would have also raised tipped wages to $5.50 an hour. Tipped wages for Wyoming workers will remain at $2.13 an hour.

Maggie Mullen is Wyoming Public Radio's regional reporter with the Mountain West News Bureau. Her work has aired on NPR, Marketplace, Science Friday, and Here and Now. She was awarded a 2019 regional Edward R. Murrow Award for her story on the Black 14.
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