(WBRE/WYOU-TV) A busy Wednesday night at the capitol – with bills that would both extend the statute of limitations for child sex victims, as well as increase the state’s minimum wage.
The Senate took up both issues, and there seemed to be overwhelming support for both.
Alex Peterson reports
“We enacted 4 bills that implement the grand jury recommendations on how we can address and protect child victims in Pennsylvania,” said Senator Lisa Baker, R-20th District.
Senate Judiciary Chairwoman, Senator Lisa Baker – Called Wednesday’s vote a significant milestone.
One of those bills – a constitutional amendment that would open up a 2-year retroactive window to allow childhood sex abuse victims to file a lawsuit.
That bill must also pass in the next session, before it’s presented to the voters – the earliest is May 2021.
Not giving voters a chance to weigh in, and sending it right to Governor Wolf’s desk Baker says, wasn’t ideal.
“Because a statutory bill I believe would be found unconstitutional,” said Senator Baker.
Earlier in the evening, the senate passed a minimum wage bill 42-7…
“This bill for 9.50 it is a start”
Senator Christine Tartaglione, D-2nd District, championed the bill which would raise the minimum wage to 950 an hour by 2022.
She says despite the success, democrats still want 15 dollars an hour.
“This by no means means we’re giving up…we’re going to continue to fight”
“If we can get this passed in the house, its almost 600 thousand people will get a raise,” said Senator Art Haywood, D-4th District.
But not everyone sees a bump as a good thing…
“This is a wedge issue that sells to certain voter groups and I think it’s more of a political issue than it is a real issue” added David Black, President CEO Of Harrisburg Regional Chamber
Harrisburg regional chamber’s David Black – questions if a set minimum wage is even necessary.
“Generally folks have to treat their employees well, they have to pay them a competitive wage or they’re not gonna have employees” said Black.
It’s no surprise that Republicans are largely not in favor of a 15 dollar minimum wage, saying it could lead to worker layoffs and cut hours at small business.
That bill will next go to the house for approval, where democrats are aware it faces an uphill battle.