The “Fight for $15” storms into Montgomery County

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Jeffrey Cirillo, Co-Online News Editor

The “Fight for $15” is on a roll. The campaign, which advocates for raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour, secured its largest victories to date in April when the governors of California and New York both signed bills to raise their states’ minimum wage.

Now, supporters of the “Fight for 15” have set their sights on Montgomery County.

On Apr. 13, County Council member Marc Elrich (D-At Large) introduced legislation to gradually raise the county’s hourly minimum wage to $15 by 2020.

“If you want to make serious social change, it has to start with families being able to put food on the table and roofs over their heads,” Elrich said.

Four other members of the nine-member council have co-sponsored the bill: George Leventhal, Nancy Navarro, Tom Hucker and Hans Riemer.

County Executive Isiah “Ike” Leggett said he would support the bill if it were amended to extend the phase-in period to 2020, and if a provision were also added allowing the county to delay implementation in case of an unexpected economic downturn.

Elrich called Leggett’s conditional statement of support “encouraging.”

If passed, the proposal would make Montgomery County’s minimum wage the highest in the state. Similar legislation has been proposed in Baltimore and Washington, D.C.

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