Dane County officials converged in front of the City Council Building in downtown Madison yesterday to announce proposed legislation that would raise the minimum wage for all county-funded employees to $15 an hour.

The living wage ordinance applies to employees who are directly involved in providing services through a service contract with Dane County. Service contract means any contract with the county for the provision of services to any county department or agency involving the following types of personal services: general labor, clerical work, janitorial work, security (including weapons screening), food service, human services contracts (including transportation), and personal care.

The county board has received requests from the public to raise the living wage to $15 per hour for over a year now. The current Dane County ordinance sets the minimum wage for county-funded jobs at about $12 per hour.

“This is going to make a difference in a lot of people’s lives,” said Dane County Supervisor John Hendrick, District 6. “If they work hard and they work full-time, they should not be living in poverty.”

The Democratic Party recently adopted a call to raise the minimum wage to $15 per hour as part of their party platform heading into the 2016 election season.

On Sept. 17, the legislation will be introduced to the County Board and will likely receive a final vote by the County Board a few months later.