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Monday, July 15, 2024

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President Joe Biden calls on the nation to 'lower the temperature' on politics; Utah governor calls for unity following Trump assassination attempt; Civil rights groups sound the alarm on Project 2025; New England braces for 'above-normal' hurricane season.

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Former President Trump is injured but safe after an attempted assassination many condemn political violence. Democrats' fears intensify over Biden's run. And North Carolina could require proof of citizenship to vote.

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Enticing remote workers to move is a new business strategy in rural America, Eastern Kentucky preservationists want to save the 20th century home of a trailblazing coal miner, and a rule change could help small meat and poultry growers and consumers.

Experts: $15 minimum wage would benefit 1 million Ohioans

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Friday, May 10, 2024   

Ohio lawmakers are considering legislation that would raise the minimum wage to $15 per hour for most Ohio workers and create a refundable Ohio Earned Income Tax Credit.

Ohio's minimum wage is $10.45 per hour for most employees, which is higher than the federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour.

Policy Matters Ohio economist Michael Shields said provisions in Ohio law weaken minimum-wage protections for certain groups, including workers younger than 16, workers who have a disability and tipped workers.

"Employers who staff tipped workers are allowed to claim a portion of those workers' tips and use it to offset the wages that they pay those workers," he said. "So, tipped workers can be paid as little as $5.25 per hour."

A citizen's ballot initiative to raise the wage will appear before voters this November if it gathers the more than 442,000 valid signatures needed by July 23 to be included on the ballot. Shields said increasing the minimum wage to $15 an hour would benefit nearly 1 million Ohioians, around 30% of whom are Black and Latino workers.

Shields said everyone deserves to be paid a wage that honors the value of work and is proportional to cost of living. Despite increases in worker productivity over the past few decades, he said employers have successfully kept wages down.

"The typical Ohio worker today produces about 76% more than their counterpart did at the end of the 1970s," he said, "but over that timeframe, wages for the worker in the middle, the median worker has gone up by just 4%."

If passed, the ballot measure would take effect in 2026. Senate Bill 256 would go into effect in 2028.

This story was produced in association with Media in the Public Interest and funded in part by the George Gund Foundation.


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"I truly love our Country, and love you all, and look forward to speaking to our Great Nation this week from Wisconsin," wrote Former President Donald Trump on social media. (Gage Skidmore/Flickr)

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