Decision could have impact in other Kentucky cities waiting for resolution
Louisville, Ky. – The Louisville metro government has the authority to set a minimum wage for the city, according to a court ruling this morning. The minimum wage will increase to $7.75 beginning July 1.
In December, the Louisville Metro Council passed an ordinance to raise the minimum wage within city limits to $9 an hour, up from $7.25, over the next three years. Later, a number of organizations, including the Kentucky Restaurant Association, filed a suit to have the ordinance voided, claiming the body did not have the legal authority to raise wages above that set by the Kentucky General Assembly.
Jefferson County Circuit Court Judge Judith McDonald-Burkman sided with the metro council.
Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer said the ruling will help Louisville families.
“I’m pleased the court has upheld my right to enact a minimum wage, as well as other local governments,” Fischer said. “The Metro Council and I took this step last summer to provide working families a higher minimum wage because we know that many struggle to pay for housing, food, clothing and medical care. Today’s favorable ruling will have a real impact on many Louisville families.”
The decision could have implications in Lexington, which is considering raising its city’s minimum wage as well. Last week, the Lexington-Fayette Urban County Council voted to table an ordinance that would raise the minimum to $10.10 an hour over three years until the Louisville lawsuit was resolved.