A bill to raise the minimum wage in Wyoming failed in the House of Representatives on Tuesday. House Bill 140 would have raised Wyoming’s minimum wage to the federal level of $7.25 an hour.
Wyoming has the lowest minimum wage in the country at $5.15 an hour. When Cheyenne Representative Jim Byrd first introduced the bill in the House Labor, Health and Social Services Committee, he proposed raising minimum wage to $9.50 an hour.
Opponents to the bill said minimum wage raises shut down small businesses and put people out of work. However, Byrd is a small business owner himself and said that paying his workers $10 an hour hasn’t put him out business.
The original bill brought to committee would have also raised tipped wages to $5.50 an hour. Tipped wages for Wyoming workers will remain at $2.13 an hour.