Dayton: I'll veto bill stopping cities setting own minimum wage, sick leave rules

The only way it could pass is if the Republicans make some serious budget concessions.

Governor Mark Dayton says he would veto a bill preventing cities from setting their own minimum wage and sick leave rules should it come to his desk.

Both the House and Senate passed versions of what's come to be known as the "preemption bill," and once members from both chambers come up with an identical version it will be sent to Dayton to be signed.

But the bill is opposed by Democratic lawmakers as well as local council members in cities including Minneapolis and St. Paul, which are in the process of enacting their own local labor laws and would be blocked from doing so should the preemption bill be passed.

Minneapolis is considering introducing a new minimum wage ordinance that could see basic pay rise to $15 an hour, and at a press conference on Thursday, Dayton said he believes local councils should be allowed to make their own decisions.

"I think it's bad policy to take over the decision-making authority of local governments, which is usually a Republican doctrine, and to lock in a minimum wage of $9.50, which is $19,000 a year," said Dayton, according to MPR.

The preemption bill, should it pass, would prevent local governments from imposing minimum wage, scheduling and sick leave rules on private companies.

This would apply retroactively to Jan. 1, 2016, meaning it would stop the sick leave ordinances passed by both Minneapolis and St. Paul that are due to go into effect this July.

There is a chance that the Republican-majority legislature could embed the preemption bill into a wider, two-year budget bill that meets with Dayton's approval.

But the Pioneer Press reports that said if Republicans really want the preemption bill to pass, they will have to make some serious concessions to Dayton in exchange for signing it.

The legislature and Dayton are currently at an impasse in budget negotiations, with Dayton saying on Wednesday he will veto every one of the Republicans' budget bills as they currently stand, according to MinnPost, with negotiations set to resume on Monday.

Next Up