ST. LOUIS (KMOX) – St. Louis City Aldermen are looking at a different proposal that would implement a $15 hourly minimum wage by 2024, but the wages will increase gradually over time, starting with a raise to $8.25.

City Alderman Shane Cohn has filed a substitute that would raise the city’s minimum wage to $8.25 immediately, which would match Illinois.

Pat White, President of Greater St. Louis Labor Council, AFL/CIO spoke out in favor of the increase.

“Three hundred dollars a week and $15,000 a year is deplorable,” White says. “I also agree that there are things going on in Jeff. City, as far as Medicaid expansion and anti-labor bills, that are deplorable.”

State Sen. Jamilah Nasheed is pushing for a statewide increase to $10 an hour.

“States with minimum wage increases such as New Jersey and Illinois have not, I repeat, have not experienced an increase in unemployment,” Nasheed says. “That is a myth.”

The Missouri Restaurant Association counters that it would ruin their industry.

Dozens of workers holding signs saying “I work hard but live in poverty” and “Our families can’t wait” were at the hearing.

Another public hearing on the proposal happens today at city hall, but no vote is expected.

(TM and Copyright 2015 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2015 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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