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Airports Commission Floats $15 an Hour Minimum Wage

Following years of pressure, Metropolitan Airports Commission is considering a $15 minimum wage for workers.

Airports Commission Floats $15 an Hour Minimum Wage
(Photo from MSP Airport's Twitter account)

The Metropolitan Airports Commission (MAC) has drafted a proposal to raise the minimum wage of Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport workers to $15 an hour by July 2022.

MAC’s proposal has some of the same features as minimum wage laws passed in Minneapolis and St. Paul. For instance, wages would increase each year until reaching $15 an hour, with additional increases tied to inflation.

In addition, employers would not be able to use tips and gratuities to help cover the minimum wage.

The ordinance also provides a process for employees to file complaints if they’re shorted wages. MAC can investigate violations and force employers to pay a series of fines and back pay.

Some types of employees would not be covered by the ordinance, such as extended employment program workers, pilots, flight attendants, and independent contractors.

The proposed ordinance also wouldn’t apply to federal, state, county, and non-MAC local government employers.

For years, airport workers have rallied for increased wages. They’ve staged demonstrations during MAC meetings, the 2019 Final Four in Minneapolis, and the busy travel day before Thanksgiving.

In 2015, airport workers secured a $10.65 per hour wage, which was one dollar more than Minnesota’s state minimum wage at the time.

Minneapolis passed its phased-in minimum wage law in 2017 and St. Paul followed suit in 2018.

A public hearing for MAC’s proposal will be held at 10:30 a.m. on January 21st in the commission’s chambers in Terminal 1.

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