Minimum wage in NJ could increase from $7.25 to $8.50

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 If you live in New Jersey, you may be getting a raise.  Thousands of minimum wage workers could see their hourly rate jump $1.25, from 7.25 to $8.50 under a bill passed by the state legislature.  The Democratic controlled senate voted along party lines Thursday for the increase but Republican Governor Chris Christie could veto it.

gilliamThe bill would go into effect March 1st and would also tie future increases to the Consumer Price Index’s inflation rate ,a provision the governor reportedly doesn’t like.  Supporters say the current minimum wage is too low for people living in the very expensive Garden State.

Opponents say in the wake of Superstorm Sandy and with a fragile economy the timing for an increase is poor.  Others say if the bill becomes law employers may be less likely to hire people. If the bill is vetoed the issue could be left for voters to decide at the ballot box.