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KS Dems Unveil Legislative Priorities

Rep. Tom Burroughs. (Photo by Stephen Koranda)
Rep. Tom Burroughs. (Photo by Stephen Koranda)

Democrats in the Kansas Legislature have unveiled some of their main proposals for this year. They’re reintroducing the so-called Hire Kansans First Act. It would require that jobs on state contracts be filled mostly with Kansas workers.

Another proposal would raise the state’s minimum wage from $7.25 to $11.32 over the next five years.

Representative Tom Burroughs is the top Democrat in the Kansas House.

“If a hard-working employee can’t make enough to pay the bills, we will never rebuild the middle class,” says Burroughs.


Burroughs added that inflation makes it more difficult for some Kansans to make ends meet.

“Higher costs of living only contribute to an increased poverty level. If we are going to help families move themselves out of poverty, we must guarantee a wage that dignifies work,” says Burroughs.

The chair of the House Commerce Committee, Republican Mark Hutton, says raising the minimum wage could lead to inflation.  And that, he says, may reduce the buying power of the increased minimum wage.

Stephen Koranda is KPR's Statehouse reporter.