Voters last approved raising the wage in 2013, from $7.25 to $8.25. The federal minimum wage is $7.25 an hour. Mike Rothwell, the owner of the market where Christie vetoed the legislation, said he employs 160 people 45 full time and 115 part time, of whom 15 percent earn the minimum wage. He cut hours in response to the 2013 minimum wage hike, he said, and would have to again, if the wage were raised. Such a significant mandated wage increase would ultimately hurt small business, he said. Rothwell said he directed workers not to talk to reporters because some might not have had enough information about the issue. Three workers declined interviews. Kathy Callahan, of Pennington, caught the end of Christies veto ceremony and said she was a Democrat who opposes Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, whom Christie supports. Minimum wage jobs should go to entry-level workers who are learning a skill and making some cash on their way to getting a higher education, she said.
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