Montana Minimum Wage, Initiative 151 (2006)

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The Montana Minimum Wage Initiative, also known as Montana Initiative No. 151 or I-151, was a initiated state statute that appeared on the November 7, 2006 ballot in Montana, where it was approved.[1]

I-151 increased the minimum wage in Montana to "the greater of either $6.15 per hour or the federal minimum wage", and it included an annual cost-of-living adjustment.

Election results

I-151 (Minimum Wage)
ResultVotesPercentage
Approveda Yes 285,535 72.7%
No107,29427.3%

Official results via: The Montana Secretary of State

Impact

It proposed raising Montana's minimum wage to the greater of either $6.15 per hour or the federal minimum wage. The measure also added an annual cost-of-living adjustment to the state minimum wage.

Under the previous law, Montana's minimum wage was equal to the federal minimum wage, which was $5.15 an hour with no cost of living adjustment.[2]

Support

Supporters

The initiative was supported by Raise Montana. They argued that the existing minimum wage rate was insufficient to cover the cost of living and that a raise was "fair," "right" and long overdue. [3] They also argued that over twenty states had already increased their minimum wage with no negative effect on their state's businesses.[4]

Donors

$297,072 was donated to the campaign in favor of a "yes" vote on I-151.

Donors of $10,000 and over were:

Donor Amount
Montana AFL-CIO $57,000
Montana Education Association/Montana Federation of Teachers $26,890
Steven Bullock $17,930
Unite HERE! $10,000
AFL-CIO $10,000
American Association for Justice $10,000

Opposition

Opponents

The official argument for the opposition was prepared by Riley Johnson of NFIB/Montana, Brad Griffin of the Montana Retail Association, Webb Brown of the Montana Chamber of Commerce and Merisa Saunders. They called the dollar per hour wage increase was a "Trojan Horse that [hid] the annual Consumer Price Index (CPI) increase," claiming the proponents of I-151 had slipped in an annual inflation factor that would "cripple small businesses." They also called the measure "mandated inflation," arguing that "when faced with automatic pay hikes, business owners will be forced to increase prices every year."[5]

Donors

$99,715 was donated to the campaign in favor of a "no" vote on I-151.

Donors of $10,000 and over were:

Donor Amount
High Plains Pizza $25,000
National Restaurant Association $20,000
Wendy's of Montana $14,000

See also

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References