Governor Phil Scott Asks Legislature to Expedite Equal Pay Legislation
Montpelier, Vt. – Governor Phil Scott today asked legislative leaders to expedite delivery of equal pay legislation that aims to close the gap between what women and men are paid, among other provisions to increase pay equity. Scott hopes to sign legislation before the Legislature breaks for Town Meeting week.
In a letter sent to the Speaker of the House Mitzi Johnson and Senate President Pro Tem Tim Ashe, Scott wrote, “as you've acknowledged, Vermont needs to restore its workforce to grow the economy and sustain – and increase – public investments we all value… Closing the wage gap could reduce Vermont's poverty rate by 57 percent and add $1 billion to our state's economy. More importantly, it would help us get one step closer to providing equality for all.”
Scott also said working to ensure equal pay for equal work is an opportunity to come together on a bipartisan basis.
The Governor’s letter points to data showing women who work full-time, year-round earn an average of 84 percent of what men in comparable roles earn, producing a wage gap of 16 percent. In addition, women coming out of college make about $3 per hour less than men with the same amount of education.
“With this in mind, I request you expedite the passage of either S.275 (an act relating to equal pay) or H.294 (an act relating to inquiries about an applicant’s salary history) as written,” Scott wrote. “With the goal of delivering one of them to me for my signature before the legislature breaks for Town Meeting.”