This came from Sen. Ted Stevens' office today, on the minimum wage:
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Ted Stevens (R-Alaska) today voted for H.R. 2, the Fair Minimum Wage Act of 2007, a bill that will raise the minimum wage to $7.25 an hour in three increments over a two-year period. The legislation, which passed the Senate 94-3, also includes a series of tax relief considerations for small businesses to help them continue to grow and create jobs.
The Congressional Budget Office estimates this minimum wage increase will impose $4 billion in new costs on the private sector in 2009 and $5.7 billion in 2010, with costs increasing at roughly $5 billion per year thereafter. Small businesses will incur the bulk of these costs and could have been forced to lay off workers if offsets were not provided.
“An increase in the minimum wage is overdue in this country. However, we couldn’t just raise the minimum wage - we had to make sure our legislation would not harm small businesses, which play such a vital role in the economy of our State and the nation,” said Senator Stevens. “The bill we passed today will protect these businesses and increase the wages paid to millions of hard-working Americans. It’s a win-win for them and our State’s small businesses.” ...
The Senate-passed version is different from the version passed by the House, in that it includes the small-business tax breaks. Both call for a $7.25 an hour minimum wage.