California bill attacks growing corporate wage gap

Apr 24, 2014 4:22 PM

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) - A California effort to lead a national debate over the growing wage gap between corporate chief executives and average workers is moving through the Legislature with support from Democratic lawmakers, organized labor and former U.S. Labor Secretary Robert Reich.

The bill advanced Thursday by the Senate Governance and Finance Committee will have a difficult time succeeding because it requires a supermajority vote in the Legislature, and Republicans are opposed.

Nevertheless, Reich told the committee the bill would reward "responsible" companies and help the middle class and the economy as a whole.

SB1372 would punish companies that pay CEOs more than 100 times the median wage of their workers by imposing a higher corporate tax. Companies with less of a wage gap would be rewarded with a lower tax rate.

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