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By: Frank Hupfl
For those that tuned in to President Obama’s State of the Union Address Tuesday night, you likely heard the President’s promise for a “year of action.” Looking to circumvent the congressional deadlock that has come to define the current administration, the President articulated his plan to utilize executive orders to pursue policies that don’t rely on congressional approval. Among the policies highlighted during Mr. Obama’s speech: an increase in the minimum wage for workers under new federal contracts.
The new policy increases the minimum wage for workers under new federal contracts to $10.10 an hour. The federal minimum wage is currently $7.25 per hour, a figure that hasn’t changed since 2009. The wage increase may affect hundreds of thousands of workers whose jobs are supported by federal dollars.
The wage increase could be seen by some as part of a broader movement to increase the minimum wage across the country. 2014 has already seen thirteen states, as well as numerous counties and cities, increase their minimum wages.