Iowa's Republican governor is mulling a statewide increase of the minimum wage.
According to The Des Moines Register, Gov. Terry Branstad may raise the rate, which now sits at $7.25 after a 2008 federal mandate. Certain Iowa counties, however, have been raising the minimum wage on a local basis.
Any action Branstad takes would trump those local wage hikes.
"I think it would be wise for us to carefully review the workforce and what the needs are out there and look at what neighboring states have done and what is competitive," Branstad said, reports the Register.
The website reports that Branstad did not, however, rule out the possibility of keeping the rate as is and making it against the law for counties to approve hikes for workers at the low-income level.
The governor will meet with Iowa lawmakers after the Nov. 8 elections to discuss the minimum wage issue, according to the Register.
"We know that this is a controversial and difficult issue, but hopefully it is one that we can address," Branstad said.
According to The Gazette in Cedar Rapids, four counties in Iowa have approved minimum wage hikes.
Iowa Democratic Party Chairwoman Andy McGuire questioned whether Branstad would actually go through with a wage hike.
"After they have stonewalled on this important issue for Iowa families for a decade, why would any Iowa worker believe Gov. Branstad and legislative Republicans are sincere today about raising the minimum?" McGuire said, reports The Gazette.
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