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Bill that would lower minimum wage for young workers essentially killed in Arizona Senate

HB2523 proposed paying full-time students under 22 $7.25 an hour, the federal minimum, instead of Arizona's minimum wage of $11.

PHOENIX — An Arizona senate panel added a supermajority vote requirement to a Republican legislative proposal allowing lower minimum wages for young workers attending school, a move that essentially kills the proposal.

Monday's move by the Senate Rules Committee came after the panel's own lawyer echoed opinions by the attorney general and two other legislative lawyers that the measure required a three-fourths vote to pass.

PREVIOUS: Attorney General: Lower youth minimum wage needs 3/4th vote

All four cited the Voter Protection Act, which prevents lawmakers from changing voter-approved laws unless they have a supermajority vote and "further the purpose" of the law.

Arizona's voter-mandated minimum wage is now $11 an hour. Republican Rep. Travis Grantham's bill would let full-time students under 22 earn the $7.25 an hour federal minimum.

Senate Democrats oppose the measure so a supermajority vote is impossible to achieve.

RELATED: Phoenix approves $15 minimum wage for city workers