D.C.’s First Walmart Stores Now Open For Business

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WASHINGTON (CBSDC/AP) — One day after the D.C. Council voted unanimously to make D.C.’s minimum wage one of the highest in the nation, the city’s first Walmarts have opened their doors.

Both are significantly smaller than the average Walmart Supercenter, which is about 182,000 square feet, but the company has hired approximately 300 associates for each.

The stores are located at 5929 Georgia Ave., NW and 99 H St., NW.

In September, the city council failed to override Mayor Vincent Gray’s veto of the controversial ‘Living Wage’ legislation, which would have required non-union District retailers with a parent company making more than $1 billion per year and occupying at least 75,000 square feet to pay its employees a minimum of $12.50 per hour.

Walmart, an outspoken opponent of the bill, had announced that it would scrap plans for some of the locations planned for the city if the bill became law. The company resumed working on the stores almost immediately after it was vetoed.

The bill approved Tuesday does not single out larger retailers, and would gradually increase the District’s minimum wage to $11.50 by July 2016.

It must clear one more vote before it goes to Mayor Vincent Gray’s desk.

More Walmart stores are planned for elsewhere in the District, as well.

(TM and Copyright 2013 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2013 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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