LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — Simplifying Nevada’s minimum wage is the goal of question two on the ballot in the midterm election.
8 News Now is taking a closer look at all three questions on the ballot this election season.
The minimum wage is already going up a bit each year and supporters of the measure want it to go up the same for everyone.
Back in 2019, Nevada lawmakers agreed the state’s minimum wage should go up.
Assembly bill 456 created a 75-cent increase every year until 2024.
In July, it went to $10.50 an hour, or $9.50 an hour, the discrepancy is based on whether an employer offers health insurance and supporters of question two aren’t in favor of it.
Annette Magnus is with Battle Born Progress a non-profit organization and uses strategic communication efforts to empower, engage and mobilize Nevada voters, according to its website.
Magnus said question two makes minimum wage fair.
If approved, instead of two different increases everything would stay the same.
“They should’ve been paying the employees the right way all along and offering health insurance,” Magnus said. “It’s just what employers are going to have to do. They’re going to have to pay a living wage to attract good employees.”
Magnus also believes that many employers are simply offering bad health insurance that way they can pay workers a dollar an hour less. She added that with the Affordable Care Act, companies can’t take advantage anymore.
“There is no reason a business in 2020 should not be able to pay the minimum wage,” she added.
Paul Moradkhan is with the Las Vegas Chamber of Commerce and said he doesn’t believe its necessary to amend the constitution.
“The current format, we believe, works for Nevada employers and employees,” he said. “This is redundant and not necessary to amend the constitution while it’s already state law.”
Moradkhan points out Nevada’s average hourly wage is already $28 an hour.
Instead, he believes money should go toward job training programs.
“Market demand will drive the salary, especially for qualified workers,” he said. “The bigger issue for the chamber is we’re focusing on the wrong solution for the problem.”
The measure already passed in the state legislature twice, putting it on the ballot this year.
If approved, it would create one $12 an hour minimum wage by 2024.