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Maryland bill would gradually raise minimum wage to $15

The State House. (The Daily Record File photo)

The State House. (The Daily Record File photo)

ANNAPOLIS — Maryland’s minimum wage would rise to $15 over several years under a measure before state lawmakers.

Del. Jeffrey Waldstreicher, a Montgomery County Democrat, outlined the bill Tuesday before a House committee.

Maryland’s minimum wage is now set to reach $9.25 an hour in July and increase to $10.10 in July of 2018. The bill would raise it to $12 in July 2019. It would go up a dollar each year after that, until it reaches $15 in July 2022.

The measure would phase in the increases by a dollar less a year for businesses with 25 employees or fewer.

A similar bill last year stalled, but this measure has been changed to have more gradual increases for smaller businesses. The bill has a pause mechanism, if negative economic factors arise.