California lawmakers have passed a bill to increase the state’s minimum wage from $8 to $10 an hour within the next three years. That would give the state one of the top minimum wage levels in the country.
The bill, which would raise the state's minimum wage to $9 in July of 2014, and then to $10 in January 2016, would mark California’s first minimum wage hike in six years.
Currently, Washington state has the highest state minimum wage at $9.19 an hour which is pegged to rise with inflation, while some cities, like San Francisco, have even higher minimums.
But while Democrats say the bill will help workers hurt by the recession, Republican lawmakers argue that it will encourage businesses to cut jobs, leaving many of those workers unemployed instead.
The California Chamber of Commerce also opposed the bill calling it a “job killer.”
Still, Gov. Jerry Brown said he’ll sign it.