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HB 1181: Perry Trying to Undo Annual Minimum Wage Indexing Approved by Voters in 2014

While Democrats try to protect South Dakotans’ wages, Republicans look for ways to keep them low.

Eight years ago, an Aberdeen legislator tried to mess with South Dakotans’ vote to raise the minimum wage. That effort failed miserably at the polls. But now another Aberdeen legislator is trying to undo the will of the people on wages.

Yesterday Representative Carl Perry (R-3/Aberdeen) filed House Bill 1181, which is titled “An Act to modify the annual minimum wage adjustment.” That title is a lie: Perry is getting rid of the annual minimum wage adjustment, not modifying it. Instead, HB 1181 would adjust the state’s minimum wage only every other year. The minimum wage would not increase on January 1, 2024; minimum-wage workers would have to wait until January 1, 2025 to get their increase.

Rep. Perry still keeps the minimum wage indexed to the Consumer Price Index, and the biennial increase would cover two years of rising cost of living, so the 2025 wage would be the same under HB 1181 as it would if we keep the annual indexing that voters approved in 2014. But Perry’s HB 1181 would keep paychecks lower in even years than the current voter-approved system provides.

In other words, HB 1181 is a Republican trick to half-repeal the will of the the voters. Clever.

Representative Perry is perhaps hoping that voters have forgotten their enthusiasm for the minimum wage and for protecting their will from the predations of Aberdeen Republicans. Voters, perhaps you should remind Representative Perry that you meant what you said about annual increases to the minimum wage.


  1. Richard Schriever 2023-01-31 07:49

    Someone should point out to Mr. Perry that the cost of labor is a price, not a benefit and that what he is proposing is the stuff of the old Soviet style centralized control of the economy. One wonders when he might get around to proposing a “10-year plan”?

  2. ABC 2023-01-31 10:35

    Add a rider to this bill, require the Legislature to work!

    Trying to force medicaid recipients to work is against Federal law. Since legislators are servabts of the people, make them do 2 weeks or 80 hours of community service each year!

    Trying to repeal what the voters passed in 2014 is very republican.

    Higher wages, repeal. Ethics laws, repeal. Liverpool wages, no ethics laws, those are Republican values.

    While we probably won’t create the District 30 Free Speech party, creating a Higher Wages party with Progressive values is 100% good.

  3. ABC 2023-01-31 10:45

    Android autocorrect!

    Lower wages, no ethics laws, those are Republican values.

    You may say why create A party when you have to get huge numbers of signatures to maintain it, isn’t that requiring more work from 3rd parties and less work from R party and their clone the D party?

    The founding fathers didn’t trust parties.

    We should only trust a total change of the system. No more Capitol in Pierre. Move it.

    Change yourself first. Then the whole system changes. Minorities don’t win elections? True. But what has noEm really won? Anything?

    We can win every day, all of us.

    The lack of sunshine, fair play, equal rights in Pierre. We can change that too, eventually

  4. Mark Anderson 2023-01-31 13:38

    Cory, the Republicans also want to strengthen Social Security and Medicare. You have to wonder what they drink every day. Is there a pub degree in conning at Hillsdale, Ian? It isn’t very effective.

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