State minimum wage in abeyance as House goes home

Harmon and Lightford expect call-back by Quinn. Oh?

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By Jim Bowman


The Illinois House went home early, leaving senate's minimum wage bill "on thin ice," reports WTVO/WQRF-Rockford.

Chicago decided that's it for now, said Deputy Majority Leader Frank Mautino (D-Spring Valley). It's up to the new assembly next month, he said.

Nice going, said a Republican leader:

House Assistant Minority Leader Bill Mitchell (R-Decatur) applauded his Democratic colleagues in the House for avoiding big issues, including minimum wage and income tax, perhaps because they learned from their mistake four years ago.

"You had legislators who said, 'No, I'm not for a tax increase,' and, on the last day they're in office," Mitchell said, "they vote for a tax increase. That left a bad taste in citizens' mouths."

Not good, said Oak Park's favorite Democrat:

But Senate Pro-Tempore Don Harmon (D-Oak Park) said the House needs to come back and take up the Senate bill on minimum wage before the end of the year.

"We have time," Harmon said, "and I know the governor's interested in making sure we take up the minimum wage."

Westchester's favorite Democrat agreed:

Senator Kimberly Lightford (D-Westchester) who sponsored the Senate bill said she had several phone conversations with the governor Wednesday. She said Governor Pat Quinn is encouraging her to move forward and House Speaker Michael Madigan (D-Chicago) to take up the bill.

Lightford believes Quinn would call the House back if Madigan doesn't do it himself before Christmas.

But the governor was not so sure:

The governor's office confirmed the conversations about calling a special session, but said Quinn hasn't decided if he will call the special session himself.

Email: Twitter: @BlitheSp

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