TRENTON — Senate President Steve Sweeney issued the following statement today following the Governor’s press conference calling for a phased-in increase to a $15 minimum wage:
“I stand ready to meet with the Governor and the Assembly Speaker to negotiate the details of a $15 minimum wage phase-in and to quickly pass the agreed-upon legislation to raise the wage.
“Too many of our fellow citizens work more than 40 hours a week and juggle multiple jobs, yet still do not make enough money to put food on the table, pay their utility bills, buy shoes and clothing for their children, and keep a roof over their family’s heads. That’s not acceptable.
“I sponsored the last two New Jersey minimum wage increases, including the 2013 constitutional amendment that required annual increases based on the rate of inflation. Businesses warned that the minimum wage increase would cost New Jersey 31,000 jobs, but we added 93,000 jobs that year instead. This proves that raising the minimum wage responsibly and incrementally will not cost jobs.
“This is no time for staged rallies and dueling press conferences. Let’s sit down, do the hard work and agree on a bill.”