John Morgan's $15 ballot initiative going to Florida Supreme Court for review

Ballot initiative would increase minimum wage by $1 every year

By Thomas Metevia - Digital Content Producer, Emilee Speck - Digital journalist

ORLANDO, Fla. - Attorney John Morgan, founder of Morgan & Morgan, announced Tuesday that his ballot initiative to increase Florida’s minimum wage to $15 per hour is headed to the state supreme court for review.

Currently, Florida's minimum wage is $8.46 an hour. Under the ballot initiative the minimum wage would increase to $10 starting in 2021 and then by a $1 every year until it reaches $15. Morgan said this will allow small businesses time to adjust.

Morgan said the ballot language received more than enough signatures from around the state in support of the initiative -- 766,200 are required to send it to the Florida Supreme Court. The court will review the ballot language, and if it is approved Florida voters will cast their votes on the amendment in 2020.

"It’s better to do this kinds of initiative in a presidential year than an off year," Morgan said.

In addition to trying to increase the base pay for all of Florida, Morgan said his law firm will not only "talk this talk" but "walk this walk" immediately by raising its starting pay to $15 for the firm's employees. Those who already make that much will get a raise.

[RELATED: These Orlando-area jobs pay about $15 per hour]

Morgan, who calls himself a compassionate capitalist, said it’s going to cost the firm millions of dollars to do it, but he believes it will come back around through investing in his employees.

"When you treat people fairly, people will stay longer and they will be more productive," Morgan said. "I believe my profits in productivity will skyrocket."

This minimum wage campaign comes on the heels of Morgan’s successful 2016 effort to legalize medical marijuana in the state of Florida.

[Re-watch Morgan's announcement in the video below.]

Morgan addressed his issues about minimum wage during a speech in 2017.

“Minimum wage in America is a joke,” Morgan said. “You can’t live on $7 or $8 an hour.”

In that same 2017 address, Morgan spoke about the idea of immigrants taking jobs from U.S. citizens, saying, “They’re doing the jobs none of us would ever do. Who wants to pick strawberries for $80 a week?” 

Morgan considered running for governor in 2018, but decided against it.

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