Local governments in Colorado can raise the minimum wage within their boundaries after Gov. Jared Polis signed new legislation allowing the practice.
House Bill 1210 repeals a provision in the current state law banning local governments from establishing their own minimum wage.
Colorado’s current minimum wage is $11.10, an amount that will raise to $12 statewide by January 1, 2020. The new law means local governments can raise that wage even higher.
Similar measures in 2015 and 2018 did not pass, but this year’s legislation was backed by Democratic majorities in both chambers and the governor.
The legislation passed the Senate a day before the session ended on May 3. The House initially passed the bill in March, but approved Senate amendments to the bill in the final hours of the session after the Senate gave its approval.
Democrats touted the legislation as a way for local governments to adjust for cost of living, which varies widely across the state.
Republicans opposed the bill, saying higher minimum wages would cost jobs because small businesses would have to cut costs.
The legislation was opposed by the Colorado Chamber of Commerce in May, and had the support of the Colorado Municipal League.
In April, Denver City Council approved a $15 minimum wage for workers contracted by the city.
The new law, which takes effect next year, will allow the city of Denver to raise its minimum wage for workers in the private sector.