The Arkansas Supreme Court today allowed the backers of a proposed increase in the minimum wage to intervene in defense of the ballot measures, which millionaire Jackson T. Stephens Jr. is trying to get tossed off the ballot. It also appointed a special master, retired Court of Appeals Judge John Robbins of Hot Springs, as a special master to be a fact-finder in the case.
Stephens, a leader of the anti-tax Club for Growth whose wealth was inherited from his father, says the initiated act shouldn’t reach the November ballot because petitions were filed late and contain flaws in the petitions and signatures. Robbins will issue findings on signatures by Oct. 10.
The court set a $5,000 bond for the petitioner and intervenor, Give Arkansas a Raise Now. It denied a request to separate the fact-finding from arguments on law. Briefs are due Oct. 13 and reply briefs Oct. 16.
The initiated act would increase the current $6.25 hourly minimum in stages to $8.50 by 2017.