D.C. Council Gives Initial Approval to Living-Wage Bill

Bill focuses in on "big box" retailers, like Wal-mart and Target

D.C. Council gave initial approval to a bill that would require large retailers to pay their employees $12.50 an hour.

The law would only affect business that are housed in spaces that are at least 75,000 square feet, The Washington Post reports. The square footage requirement is an amendment to the original bill and focuses in on "big box" retailers,  like Wal-mart and Target.

While the measure has the support of labor unions, retail representatives say the "living-wage bill" is a burden for employers. Other opponents fear the bill will scare businesses away from D.C.

In a statement, Wal-mart called on Mayor Vincent Gray to veto the bill. The internationally-known chain plans to open six stores in the district. They have not said how an enacted bill would impact those plans.

Currently, minimum wage in the city is $8.25.  A final vote is set for July 10.

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