23 May 2007

CNMI business backs wage amendment

6:10 pm on 23 May 2007

Saipan's Chamber of Commerce in the Commonwealth of the Northern Marianas says many businesses support an amendment to a bill to lessen the impact of a proposed minimum wage hike in the U.S.

If enacted, the wage hike would eventually more than double the minimum wage in the CNMI from its current $3.05 to $7.25 an hour.

But an amendment proposes to reduce the increase from 50 U.S. to 35 cents, with any increases to be discussed rather than imposed.

The Chamber's President, Juan Guerrero, says this would time to assess the economic impact on CNMI's ailing economy.

He says not only CNMI is concerned, but American Samoa as well.

"The delegate from American Samoa to introduce a bill that would include the CNMI or Northern Marianas under the same provision becomes a more permanent basis, rather than an annual review by Congress."

Juan Guerrero from Saipan's Chamber of Commerce