D.C. Council Fails to Override Mayor Gray's 'Living Wage' Veto

WI Web Staff | 9/17/2013, 5:15 p.m.
Wal-Mart had planned to build six stores in the District. Courtesy Photo

The D.C. Council on Tuesday was unable to gather enough votes to overturn Mayor Vincent C. Gray’s veto of the large-retailer living wage bill.

The 13-member Council was only able to garner seven of the needed nine votes to override the mayor's veto last week of the Large Retailer Accountability Act, which would require the city's largest retailers, including Wal-Mart, to pay higher wages. Anita Bonds, at-large Democrat, was the lone member to vote against the override after initially supporting the bill.

After the bill passed the D.C. Council by an 8-5 vote in July, Gray announced Thursday that he had vetoed the bill, calling it a "job-killer."

He said his decision was partly based on his contention that the bill didn't guarantee city residents would get any of the employment opportunities the bill may have generated.

The District's minimum wage is $8.25 an hour. The bill would have generally applied to large retail companies such as Wal-Mart and Target and not to small businesses.