Minimum wage debate begins at Colorado Legislature

A Democratic push to raise the minimum wage in Colorado gets started this week at the Capitol.

Two bills up for a hearing Monday afternoon could lead to raises for minimum wage workers.

The first would ask voters whether the wage should be raised gradually over the next five years. The ballot measure would set a wage of $9.50 starting in 2017, then going up a dollar an hour each year until the minimum wage is $12.50 an hour by the year 2020.

The second bill would allow local governments to set their own minimum wages in excess of the state minimum wage. Cities and counties are currently prohibited by law from doing that.

Sponsors are planning a rally before the bill hearing of minimum-wage workers calling for higher pay.

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