D.C. Council upholds mayor's veto of 'living wage' bill

Washington, D.C. -- The D.C. Council failed on Tuesday to overturn Mayor Vincent Gray’s veto of the proposed “living wage” bill. According to Washington Business Journal, only seven of the required nine district councilors voted to override Gray’s veto of the Large Retailer Accountability Act.

National Retail Federation (NRF) senior VP for government relations David French issued the following statement:

"Plain and simple, the city council's vote to sustain the mayor's veto of the Large Retailer Accountability Act is a victory for D.C. jobs and the D.C. community. Just as important, today marks a clear defeat for the special interest groups that sought to advance a narrow political agenda without regard to the legislation's impact on current and future D.C. residents. No industry, and certainly no company, should be singled out by union organizers. D.C. needs retail as much as retail needs D.C.”

Yesterday, D.C. District Council members introduced several proposed bills to raise the overall minimum wage for all employers in Washington, D.C., to hourly levels ranging from $10.25 to $12.50. The current hourly minimum wage in the district is $8.25.

The living wage bill, initially adopted in July 2013, would have required retailers with a minimum of 75,000 square feet of retail space in Washington, D.C., whose parent company earned at least $1 billion in annual revenues to pay a minimum hourly wage of $12.50, not including benefits. Retailers with collective bargaining agreements would not have been covered by the bill.


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