Bill Text: HI SB1037 | 2012 | Regular Session | Amended

Bill Title: Minimum Wage; Consumer Price Index

Spectrum: Partisan Bill (Democrat 1-0)

Status: (Introduced - Dead) 2011-12-01 - Carried over to 2012 Regular Session. [SB1037 Detail]

Download: Hawaii-2012-SB1037-Amended.html





Honolulu, Hawaii



RE:    S.B. No. 1037

       S.D. 1




Honorable Shan S. Tsutsui

President of the Senate

Twenty-Sixth State Legislature

Regular Session of 2011

State of Hawaii




     Your Committee on Judiciary and Labor, to which was referred S.B. No. 1037 entitled:




begs leave to report as follows:


     The purpose and intent of this measure is to increase the minimum wage to ensure that the lowest-paying jobs in our State keep up with the proportional increase in inflation by:


     (1)  Increasing the minimum wage to $8.50 per hour beginning July 1, 2011, and ending December 31, 2012; and


     (2)  Adjusting the minimum hourly wage beginning January 1, 2013, and thereafter according to the Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers.


     Your Committee received testimony in support of this measure from ILWU Local 142.  Your Committee received testimony in opposition to this measure from The Chamber of Commerce of Hawaii.  Your Committee received comments on this measure from the Department of Labor and Industrial Relations.


     Your Committee recognizes that there are concerns about the fiscal impact of an increase to the minimum wage.  Your Committee finds that the minimum wage represents a wage floor, and most employers try to pay slightly more than the minimum wage to recruit and retain employees.  However, if the minimum wage floor remains stagnant for years at a time, low-wage workers will remain underpaid and need to rely on government programs like Medicaid and food stamps or private programs like the Food Bank to supplement their families' income. 


     Your Committee notes that, during the 2010 legislative session, a similar measure, S.B. No. 2244 (2010), was heard by the Senate Committee on Labor.  At that time, there were concerns about the establishment of an automatic adjustment mechanism.  Your Committee believes that this concern is well-taken.


     Accordingly, your Committee has amended this measure by:


     (1)  Deleting the automatic adjustment index provision that would have adjusted the minimum hourly wage rate based on the rate of inflation in accordance with the Consumer Price Index;


     (2)  Inserting an effective date of July 1, 2050, to facilitate further discussion; and


     (3)  Making technical, nonsubstantive amendments for the purposes of clarity and consistency.


     As affirmed by the record of votes of the members of your Committee on Judiciary and Labor that is attached to this report, your Committee is in accord with the intent and purpose of S.B. No. 1037, as amended herein, and recommends that it pass Second Reading in the form attached hereto as S.B. No. 1037, S.D. 1, and be referred to the Committee on Ways and Means.


Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Judiciary and Labor,