At eight dollars 25 cents, Illinois' minimum wage is already a dollar higher than the federal limit, but Governor Pat Quinn says it should be higher. Quinn suggests raising the minimum wage, or at the very least making sure it keeps pace with cost of living increases:
Quinn's pronouncement comes as US census data revealed more people living in poverty in the US, and in Illinois. Though the increase is statistically slight, nearly 150 thousand more people dipped below the poverty line from 2010 to last year, it means about 14 percent of the state's residents are impoverished. However, businesses say that raising the state's minimum wage will hurt, not help, the cause. Business owners fought an effort by a Democratic legislator last spring to hike Illinois' minimum wage. They say to afford paying bigger paychecks, they'd have to lay off employees.
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