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Seattle mayor to announce plan for minimum wage increase

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SEATTLE — Seattle Mayor Ed Murray has announced he will unveil on Thursday his plan to increase the minimum wage in the city.

The mayor's announcement came as his advisory group of business, labor, non-profits and other representatives apparently did not agree on a plan. Murray had created the group late last year to chart a plan following a pledge to increase the minimum wage to $15 an hour.

In a statement, Murray says he hopes that the advisory group manages to reach an agreement by Thursday. If not, he's ready to present his plan.

In Seattle, the prevailing debate is not whether the minimum wage will be increased to $15, but how and when. Business groups want a training wage, a phase-in period and for a total wage to count health care, commissions, tips and bonuses. Meanwhile, a group led by socialist City Council member Kshama Sawant is lobbying for an immediate wage hike for large businesses and a three-year phase-in for small and medium sized employers.

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