On a 210-145 vote, Democrats passed a bill on Thursday in the N.H. House that would raise the state’s minimum wage to $12 an hour.
Supporters argued that the current rate of $7.25 leaves working families struggling to cover basic necessities, and leaves even full-time workers reliant on government programs.
The bill makes incremental increases in the wage, starting with $9.50 in 2020, $10.75 in 2021, before topping out at $12 in 2022.
Republicans criticized the measure, arguing that it will lead to layoffs and reduced hours for lower wage workers. They also said it will increase prices for consumers.
On a bipartisan 274-79 vote, the lower chamber turned down a floor amendment that would have raised the rate to $15 an hour.
Democrats in the Senate are also considering a $12 an hour bill.