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State lawmakers agree to boost minimum wage

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State House and Senate negotiators reached an agreement Friday to increase the state’s minimum wage to $10.10 an hour by January 2018. The tip credit would expand to 75 cents.

Businesses could deduct the tip credit on workers who earn at least $7 more than the minimum wage, up from 50 cents.

Rep. Mark Nakashima, the lead House negotiator on the bill, offered the new draft. Sen. Clayton Hee, the lead Senate negotiator, said he would recommend the draft to senators.

Hee, who had held out for a higher minimum wage, described the draft as a victory for the working poor.

Gov. Neil Abercrombie commended lawmakers for moving the bill forward to a final vote next week. “It is imperative to provide our lowest paid workers with the economic stability and security they deserve,” he said in a news release. 

The state’s $7.25 an hour minimum wage has not been increased since 2007. The tip credit is 25 cents.

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