Sen. Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) is announcing a plan requiring large corporations to pay their employees at least $15 per hour.
Hawley’s legislation targets companies with revenues of $1 billion or more and requires the minimum wage for billion-dollar corporations to be indexed to the federal median wage after 2025.
“For decades, the wages of everyday, working Americans have remained stagnate while monopoly corporations have consolidated industry after industry, securing record profits for CEOs and investment bankers,” Hawley said in a statement.
He continued, “Mega-corporations can afford to pay their workers $15 an hour, and it’s long past time they do so, but this should not come at the expense of small businesses already struggling to make it.”
Hawley noted employees at small businesses would benefit from his previously introduce Blue Collar Bonus.
The legislation would give small business workers making below the median wage a bonus through an automatic, advanceable tax credit connected to hours worked.
“Wages for blue-collar workers have been stagnant for decades. And government made the problem worse by shutting down the economy a year ago. It’s time we give blue-collar workers some respect and a pay raise,” Hawley said.
He added, “This plan would deliver meaningful relief for families and working Americans through higher pay while incentivizing and promoting work.”
Senate Finance Committee Chairman Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) similarly unveiled another plan to raise the minimum wage after the Senate parliamentarian ruled the proposal from House Democrats to do so could not be included in the COVID-19 relief package.
The plan would require large corporations to pay their employees a certain amount or face a 5 percent tax penalty with it increasing over time.
“As chair of the Finance Committee, I’ve been working on a ‘plan B’ that would make big companies pay for mistreating their workers. My plan would impose a 5 percent penalty on a big corporations’ total payroll if any workers earn less than a certain amount. That penalty would increase over time,” Wyden said in a statement.
He added, “While conversations are continuing, I believe this ‘plan B’ provides us a path to move forward and get this done through the reconciliation process.”