NewsCovering Kentucky


Lexington state lawmaker prefiling bill that would raise minimum wage to $15 an hour

Posted at 5:53 PM, Nov 12, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-12 18:02:11-05

(LEX 18) — Kentucky State Senator Reggie Thomas wants to raise the state's minimum wage to $15 an hour.

Senator Thomas, who represents Lexington, is filing a bill to increase the minimum wage for all workers statewide. The increase would come in waves over the next six years.

Senator Thomas has filed similar legislation in the past but says he is still pushing for a change because he believes $7.25 an hour isn't enough to lift people out of poverty.

"People want to work, let me be clear, people want to get out there and have their own independence, have their own pride, have their own dignity by working," said Senator Reggie Thomas (D-Lexington). "But you can't ask someone to work paying poverty wages and still have to supplement their income through other kinds of poverty programs. That is ridiculous."

Senator Thomas points to a similar bill in Florida that was approved earlier this month.

The first phase of his plan would raise the minimum wage to $9.50 an hour by July 2021 and increase it to $15 an hour by 2026.

It will be up for debate when lawmakers return to Frankfort in January.