3 Mar 2008

Chairman of US Senate Committee vows swift action over wage hike bill

11:34 am on 3 March 2008

The Senate committee in charge of U.S. insular affairs has vowed to act quickly on a federal bill proposing the suspension of further increases in the minimum wage in the Northern Marianas and American Samoa.

Senator Jeff Bingaman, the chairman of the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Affairs, said that his panel will review the testimonies submitted on the minimum wage and refine the bill halting future hikes.

Speaking before a wage hearing in Washington last week, Mr Bingaman said he realized that the time constraints were very real.

The next scheduled minimum wage increase will go into effect on May 25, 2008.

During the hearing, the committee heard testimonies from government officials from the CNMI and American Samoa.