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Maryland House gives preliminary OK to raising minimum wage

Maryland House gives preliminary OK to raising minimum wage
Gov. Martin O'Malley (D ¿ MD.) speaks to a crowd in front of the statehouse about raising the minimum wage in Maryland. (Karl Merton Ferron / Baltimore Sun)

The House of Delegates gave preliminary approval Wednesday to legislation that would raise Maryland's minimum wage from $7.25 to $10.10, rejecting a flurry of amendments offered by opponents.

The action clears the way for a final House vote on the measure Friday. Votes on amendments indicated that proponents of the increase — a top priority of Gov. Martin O'Malley — have more than enough votes to pass the bill and send it to the Senate.

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Opponents focused on a controversial provision exempting seasonal amusement parks such as Six Flags in Prince George's County from the wage increase, charging that would create an unfair break for one type of company. Del. Ron George, an Anne Arundel County Republican who is running for governor, offered an amendment that would have removed the exemption. It was defeated 91-43.

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