DFL Gov. Mark Dayton says he would be comfortable with increasing the state's minimum wage to $9.00 or $9.50 an hour.
Dayton's preference is lower than a House DFL proposal, which would increase the minimum wage paid by large employers from $6.15 to $10.55 by 2015. But it's higher than the $7.50 minimum wage in a DFL Senate bill.
Dayton told reporters Wednesday that he thought his preferred range was a "good target." He said he believes the minimum wage should be enough to allow someone working full time to support a family of four at the poverty level.
"Then with more experience and training, they can go up and achieve the American dream," Dayton said. "But we want work to pay, and if we're letting businesses hire people for less than they need to get out of poverty, then the rest of us as taxpayers end up paying all these other programs to support them."
Dayton also said he supports automatic inflationary increases to the minimum wage. That provision is in both the House and Senate proposals.