Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam talks about how he was raised during an interview in the Governor's Mansion February 09, 2019 in Richmond, VA. He and Attorney General Mark R. Herring have admitted to using blackface in the past. And, Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax denies sexually assaulting two women. (Photo by Katherine Frey/The Washington Post via Getty Images)
**FILE** Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam (Photo by Katherine Frey/The Washington Post via Getty Images)

Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam has proposed delaying an increase of the state’s minimum wage for about five months, a move he said would bolster the state’s flagging economy amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Under Northam’s proposal, the new hourly rate would go into effect on May 1, 2021, instead of in January.

“This will ensure workers get the support they need while allowing greater economic certainty in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic,” the governor said in a statement Sunday.

Northam noted that other labor-related measures would become effective at the same time.

The General Assembly last month approved a measure to increase the minimum wage from the current $7.25 to $9.50 in January, before gradually increasing to $12 by 2023.

The assembly is scheduled to act on Northam’s vetoes and amendments later this month during a one-day session.

WI Guest Author

This correspondent is a guest contributor to The Washington Informer.

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