State Representative Randy Hunt (R-Sandwich) explains the compromise reached today on the minimum wage increase and paid family leave measure...
The MA legislature passed a bill today (H4640) that's being called the "Grand Bargain" which has the purpose of displacing two of the ballot petition questions that were lined up for the November election.
One was a $15 minimum wage and the other a paid family and medical leave act. If passed in November, these ballot questions would have had a heavier handed effect on businesses than H4640. I believe everyone left the negotiations with something positive and, at the same time, feeling a bit disappointed; possibly the mark of a successful compromise.
The Retailers Association of Massachusetts and Associated Industries of Massachusett lobbied for the passage of H4640, understanding that the alternative was worse from their perspective.
Workers are getting the $15 minimum wage over five years instead of four but giving up automatic inflation indexing. They also will have a paid family and medical leave benefit that had been sought for a dozen years or more.
Consumers are getting a permanent tax free weekend in August.
The entire Cape delegation of state senators and representatives voted in favor of H4640.
I compiled a side-by-side comparison of the primary provisions of the ballot petitions versus the bill we passed today. See it here: