Maine election officials yesterday (Feb. 16) determined that a petition to increase the state's minimum wage is valid. The petition proposes raising the minimum wage to $9 per hour in 2017 and by $1 per hour each year after that until it's $12 per hour in 2020.

The minimum wage now stands at $7.50 an hour.

The Legislature can choose to enact the bill as written or to send it to voters on the November ballot.