Kentucky lawmakers consider minimum wage hike - WOWK 13 Charleston, Huntington WV News, Weather, Sports

Kentucky lawmakers consider minimum wage hike

Posted: Updated:
RUSSELL, Ky. -

Kentucky lawmakers say a raise for the state's lowest paid workers is a "real possibility."

"People struggle. I know I struggle. I work two jobs and can't make it," says Angela Craft, who works at the Hillbilly Flea Market in Russell to supplement income from her regular job where she makes $8.00 an hour. "A hundred and fifty a week, that's six hundred a month. That's a substantial change."

The Kentucky House of Representatives passed a bill that would raise the minimum wage by $0.95 an hour each year until 2016, when it would be $10.10 an hour.

The Senate has time to change those numbers.

Business owner, Scott Bayless, hopes the numbers go down.

"Am I going to lower my wage to meet your wage, and pay for my kids' stuff? I'm going to raise my prices. Therefore, the minimum wage you just got, it's gonna be gone," says Bayless. "We won't get nothing. All they did was get votes out of it."

Lacey Ripberger fears more people will lose their jobs if the minimum wage goes up.

She has already had a bad experience.

"I worked at K-mart, and I got laid off, because they were unable to pay everyone that worked there," says the 19-year-old high school senior. "I'm not mad at K-mart. I understand completely. I would not be mad at all. I just really wish I could have kept my job. I needed it."

With another round of vigorous debate expected on this bill, it may take serious compromise to get any wage hike passed.

There are three weeks left in Kentucky's legislative session.