Sewell offers a 'practical' minimum wage increase bill

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WASHINGTON (Gray DC) - A new push to increase the minimum wage in Alabama is coming from Capitol Hill. Rep. Terri Sewell of Alabama's 7th congressional district, introduced legislation Thursday that calls for regionalizing the federal minimum wage standard.

Alabama Cong. Terri Sewell (Gray DC Bureau)

The legislation would calculate a new federal wage scale based on your cost of living and purchasing power. For instance, in 2020 residents living in Tuscaloosa, could make a minimum of $9.10 per hour, while those living in New York City would make $12 per hour.

Sewell calls this a practical approach to raising the minimum wage, protecting employers and employees together. She says some Democrats have raised concerns that this could undercut the push for a $15 per hour minimum.

"Generally all of us want a higher minimum wage. I just think that it's important that we have, that all proposals are considered on the table," said Sewell.

Under her plan, the minimum wages would increase over time. Her projection has a city like Tuscaloosa at $11.50 per hour by 2024. She is hoping to garner support from both sides of the aisle with this proposal.