Watch: Gov. Wolf calls for minimum wage increase

Western PA News

Governor Wolf today called on the General Assembly to raise Pennsylvania’s minimum wage to $12 an hour, with a path to $15.

The governor’s plan increases the state’s minimum wage to $12 per hour on July 1, with annual increases of $0.50 until reaching $15 per hour on July 1, 2027.

Nearly 1.1 million workers would get a raise, which would add $4.4 billion to the state’s economy.

“This isn’t about pitting workers against business owners, because businesses also stand to benefit from a higher minimum wage,” said Gov. Wolf. “Increasing the minimum wage puts more money into the pockets of workers, which gives local businesses more customers. Boosting wages also increases productivity and decreases turnover.”

The governor was joined today by Rep. Patty Kim, prime sponsor of HB 345 to raise the minimum wage, and local business owners Peter Barber, President, CEO and Co-owner of Two Dudes Painting Company and Jennie Groff, CEO and Co-owner of Stroopies, Inc.

According to a Franklin & Marshall College poll released in March, 67 percent of registered Pennsylvania voters support raising the minimum wage to $12.

Eight other states across the country are on path to $15 minimum wage. President Biden also recently took executive action to increase the minimum wage for federal contractors and tipped employees to $15.

Overall, 29 other states, including every state that borders Pennsylvania, have raised the minimum wage above $7.25 an hour.

“We’ve been in business for almost 35 years, and fair pay has been central to our success,” said Peter Barber, CEO of Two Dudes Painting Company in Lancaster, a full service painting company with more than 65 employees. “Our turnover is low, which saves us money and time. More experienced employees do better quality work, are more reliable, and provide better customer service. Raising Pennsylvania’s minimum wage to $15 by 2027 will strengthen businesses and our economy.”

“Our experience as a small company demonstrates that paying livable wages is not only doable, it is good for business,” said Jennie Groff, CEO of Stroopies, Inc. a Lancaster food manufacturer in retail, wholesale and online distribution with 18 employees. “When your workers are cared for, they’ll be your biggest assets. $7.25 an hour is too low to live on. By raising the minimum wage, we will invest in our workers, support the growth of our businesses, and build a stronger Pennsylvania.”

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