Arizona leads 5-state lawsuit against $15 minimum wage for federal contractors
PHOENIX – Arizona and four other states are suing the Biden administration over its new $15 minimum wage and overtime pay requirements for federal contractors.
Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich, a Republican running for U.S. Senate this year, filed the challenge Tuesday in U.S. District Court, District of Arizona.
According to the complaint, President Joe Biden exceeded his authority by upping the federal contractor hourly minimum through a November 2021 executive order that went into effect Jan. 30.
“His minimum wage mandate is yet another example of attempted federal overreach that has become a pattern with this administration,” Brnovich said in a press release.
The plaintiffs – Arizona, Idaho, Indiana, Nebraska and South Carolina — want Biden’s order to be declared unenforceable for allegedly violating the spending clause of the Constitution and the Procurement Act.
“To be sure, the Executive Branch may have authority to set some provisions of contracts to ensure the contracts are performed efficiently,” the complaint says.
“But the Procurement Act provides no clear notice to States that accepting federal contracting funds will require them to surrender their sovereignty over the wages that they pay their own workers.”
The lawsuit also argues that the order impacts many businesses that shouldn’t be considered federal contractors, including Arizona’s three state universities.
Arizona’s minimum wage went up to $12.80 at the start of the year.
Brnovich has involved Arizona in a string of cases opposing Biden’s policies, including multiple suits related to vaccine mandates.