Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin, President Jeff Kessler and House Speaker Tim Miley today issued the following statements relating to House Bill 4283.
"I signed this bill because I believe it is a positive step toward helping more than 100,000 hardworking West Virginians earn a fair wage--including mothers, fathers, working adults, as well as teens working their first jobs," Gov. Tomblin said. "In the last decade, the face of the minimum wage worker has changed while the minimum wage has stayed the same."
Gov. Tomblin added, "However, I'm aware there may be some unintended consequences relating to overtime compensation and maximum hours worked, which give me great pause. I will call the Legislature into extraordinary session during the May interims, beginning May 19, 2014 to address the issues of great concern to businesses large and small--including the fiscal challenges expected to affect our local governments. President Kessler and Speaker Miley have both committed to working with me to achieve this ultimate goal."
"Any minor clarifications regarding exemptions in HB 4283 can be taken care of during a brief special session before its effective date," says Senate President Kessler. "Signing this piece of legislation is not only the right thing to do for the state's workers; it will also help the state's economy. This bill puts more money in the pockets of hard working West Virginians, who in turn spend their money locally. This is a very positive measure for our state."
"Governor Tomblin's signature on HB 4283 is truly something to celebrate. From the start, this bill received overwhelming support in the House of Delegates because West Virginia leaders value working West Virginians," says House Speaker Tim Miley.
"To the extent that enactment of this bill causes concern to local governments, agencies and interests from the private sector, the House of Delegates stands willing to continue working with Governor Tomblin and the Senate to ensure that the increased minimum wage has no adverse impact on the overtime laws that employers in the state are accustomed to following."
"I appreciate Governor Tomblin signing the bill to increase the minimum wage to help families better their lives in West Virginia," said Kenny Purdue, president of the West Virginia AFL-CIO. "I support the action taken by Governor Tomblin and I pledge to support the Governor's bill as it is introduced in the upcoming special session."