Raimondo signs bill to increase minimum wage in RI


PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — Employees making minimum wage in Rhode Island can expect a $1 pay bump this fall.

Gov. Gina Raimondo signed a bill Tuesday that will increase Rhode Island’s minimum wage to $11.50 an hour starting Oct. 1.

“Nobody should work full-time and live in poverty,” said Raimondo, “I’m proud that we’ve increased the minimum wage four times since I took office, and I look forward to working with the General Assembly to continue building on that progress.”

Prior to the $1 increase, minimum wage in the Ocean State was $10.50, which was bumped up from $10.10 at the beginning of 2019.

The legislation, sponsored by Sen. Erin Lynch Prata and Rep. David Bennett, was approved by the General Assembly last week after passing both the R.I. House and Senate.

Both lawmakers have been the primary sponsors of every law enacted to raise the state’s minimum wage since 2012, when it was $7.40.

“As the costs of daily life continue to increase, we must not forget those who are on the bottom of the economic ladder,” Lynch Prata said.

Minimum wage in Massachusetts is $12.75, while in Connecticut it is $11.

A group of lawmakers on Smith Hill previously introduced a bill that would raise the state’s minimum wage to $15 by 2023, but it was ultimately scaled back. Advocates say they will continue pressing for a bigger increase.

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