Legislative Democrats Push for ‘Local Wage Act’

Democratic state lawmakers argue it’s time to give local governments more control over how businesses treat their employees.

The package of bills, deemed the “Local Wage Act,” would repeal a state law that prevents local governments from setting their own minimum wage and would allow them to enact their own family and medical leave standards.

Wisconsin’s minimum wage of $7.25 an hour was last increased in 2009, when Democrats were in charge of state government. State Senator Dave Hansen (D-Green Bay) says Republicans have done nothing to address the issue for the past eight years, while the state has fallen behind. “It is time to give back the right of communities, local control, to set their own standards for how they value work and the people who do it,” he says.

The proposals are unlikely to see much movement under the current Republican-controlled Legislature.