New Jersey Governor Chris Christie proposed increasing the state’s minimum wage by $1 over a phase- in period of three years.
Christie conditionally vetoed Democrats’ legislation, which had sought to raise the wage to $8.50 an hour in March from $7.25 and tie future increases to changes in the U.S. Consumer Price Index. He also proposed a 25 percent increase in the New Jersey Earned Income Tax Credit, which benefits workers of low and moderate incomes.
Christie, 50, a Republican seeking a second term, said in a statement that the Democrats’ measure was “lopsided” because it would harm small businesses while helping wage earners.
New Jersey Chamber of Commerce Chief Executive Officer Thomas Bracken called Christie’s proposal a “reasonable compromise.”
Assembly Speaker Sheila Oliver, a Democrat from East Orange, said the legislature will push for a referendum on the November ballot.
“We just need a simple majority of votes out of the Assembly and the Senate, which we know we will have,” Oliver said in a statement.
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