Bill on increasing minimum wages in American Samoa and CNMI advanced by US RepsCourtesy of Radio New Zealand International
The U.S. House of Representatives has advanced this morning the federal supplemental bill, that outlines spending for the Iraq war and includes provisions to increase minimum wages in American Samoa and CNMI.
Efforts to amend the bill, seeking a one-time 35 cent per hour hike was unsuccessful.
As it stands now, minimum wages will increase 50 cents per hour 60 days after the enactment and every year thereafter for the next 8 years.
Congressman Faleomavaega Eni says that the final language of the bill was negotiated between Congressional leadership and the White House and there were no chances to offer a lower wage increase.
Reports from Washington this morning states that both the U.S. House and U.S Senate is expected to approve the supplemental today and the measure will then go to President Bush before the weekend.
I literally laughed out loud when I read the Saipan Tribune article on this story. The Governor is saying that he would support the increase if it exempted the garment factories (and the maids, farmers, and fishermen). Where have you been, Governor? The increase is happening because of the garment factory abuses. Why would they even consider exempting them?