Miami Beach mayor seeks to raise city's minimum wage to $13.31 an hour

Mayor Philip Levine says proposed minimum wage would gradually increase


MIAMI BEACH, Fla. – The mayor of Miami Beach is pushing to raise the minimum wage in his city.

Mayor Philip Levine announced Wednesday that he will introduce legislation at the May 11 City Commission meeting to establish a citywide minimum living wage.

"Miami Beach is known worldwide for taking on its challenges with meaningful solutions," Levine said. "Today, we are announcing proposed legislation that addresses the growing gap between wages and the cost of living in South Florida by proposing a minimum living wage for our community."

Miami Beach would be the first city in Florida to establish a minimum wage.

"We continue to hear stories from our residents who are unable to live and work in Miami Beach because of the high costs of rent, transportation and basic living costs," Levine said. "But today, we start addressing this growing problem through higher wages by establishing a citywide minimum living wage."

Under the proposed legislation, the minimum wage would increase gradually over a four-year period. The current minimum wage in the state is $8.05 an hour. Levine wants to increase minimum wage to $13.31 an hour by 2020.

The proposed minimum wage would increase to $10.31 in 2017, with a $1 an hour increase every year until 2020.

"Miami Beach must lead the way in reversing the trend that makes Florida a high-cost, low-wage state," Levine said. "Cities all over the United States have passed similar local minimum wage ordinances, and the evidence shows the positive impact it has on the local economy. Communities that established higher minimum wages have not seen increased unemployment, and workers are better able to afford basic needs and employee turnover drops considerably."

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