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Opponents deliver referendum signatures to put Seattle’s $15 minimum wage on ballot

Rescuers search a crumbled building in Arcuata del Tronto, central Italy, where a 6.1 earthquake struck just after 3:30 a.m., Wednesday, Aug. 24, 2016. The quake was felt across a broad section of central Italy, including the capital Rome where people in homes in the historic center felt a long swaying followed by aftershocks. (AP Photo/Sandro Perozzi)

Supporters of a referendum to put Seattle’s $15 minimum wage to a public vote have turned in what they are confident will be enough signatures to qualify the measure for the November ballot.

Forward Seattle co-founder and Seattle small business owner Kathrina Tugadi tells KIRO Radio’s Jason Rantz show they have gathered nearly 20,000 signatures, far more than the 16,500 signatures required to qualify the referendum.

City Clerk Monica Martinez Simmons tells The Seattle Times her office likely will not finish counting the signature petitions until next Monday at the earliest. They will then be sent to the King County Elections office to verify the signatures.

Supporters of a $15 minimum wage have alleged paid signature gatherers for the referendum have misrepresented the measure, claiming it would actually raise the minimum wage or that the ordinance passed by the City Council has not yet been passed.

Working Washington has asked King County Prosecutor Dan Satterberg to investigate. His office on Wednesday forwarded the complaints to the Seattle City Attorney’s Office and Seattle Police Department for investigation.

A spokesman for Satterberg says the allegations would constitute potential gross misdemeanors and fall under the city’s jurisdiction, not the county’s.

Jason Rantz on KIRO Radio 97.3 FM

  • Tune in to KIRO Radio weeknights at 7pm for The Jason Rantz Show.

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