The Prince George’s County Council joined Montgomery County leaders in voting to raise the $7.25-an-hour minimum wage to $11.50 over the next four years, reports the Washington Post.
The action came Wednesday, a day after the Montgomery County Council approved a similar measure, the newspaper said. The push to increase the wage is part of a collaborative regional effort by Prince George’s and Montgomery counties and the District.
The Montgomery County Council voted 8-1 to approve a minimum wage bill that will increase wages to $11.50 an hour by 2017, according to Patch.
Prince George’s County Executive Rushern L. Baker III (D) has said he is concerned that raising the minimum wage would put the county, which has struggled to attract retailers, at a competitive disadvantage.
“The bottom line is that while we do live in a region of great prosperity we also have great pockets of poverty,” said Prince George’s County Council’s chair, Andrea Harrison (D-Springdale).
Both bills increase the wage in yearly steps. The measure would not apply to tipped employees or to workers younger than 18 who are employed for no more than 20 hours per week, the Post said.
Federal minimum wage is $7.25 per hour. That is also the rate for Maryland.
The bill’s co-sponsors in Montgomery County -- Council President Nancy Navarro (D-Mid-County) and Valerie Ervin (D-Eastern County) -- said they were concerned that implementing the higher wage over a four-year stretch would hurt the chances of regional action, The Washington Post reports.
The Washington, D.C. Council is expected to vote on its minimum wage bill Dec. 3.
This story contains reporting from Patch Editor Tiffany Arnold.