Montgomery County Executive Isiah Leggett on Monday vetoed legislation that would have made the wealthy county the first jurisdiction in Maryland to require a $15 minimum wage.
Leggett (D) said boosting the wage to the level embraced by national progressive activists, including former Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders (Vt.), would harm Montgomery’s economy and its ability to compete for jobs in the Washington region.
Leggett left the door open to considering a revised bill, contingent on a study of the economic impact of a $15 minimum wage on the county’s public, private, and nonprofit sectors. His other conditions for signing a revised bill include extending the wage hike’s phase-in to 2022 — two years after the District will begin requiring a minimum of $15 an hour — and including an exemption for small business and youth workers.
The US federal minimum wage peaked in 1968 at about $10.81/hour in 1968 in 2016 dollars (inflation adjusted). It is currently $7.25 in today's dollars. Maryland's minimum wage is currently $8.75/hour and is scheduled to be increase to $10.10/hour in 2017, still about a buck an hour lower than it was in 1968 (adjusting for presumed inflation).
Per capita GDP is about as twice as high as it was then.