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Wal-Mart said it will halt plans for three stores in the nation’s capitol after the D.C. Council approved a bill that boosts minimum wages paid by large retailers by nearly $5 a hour.

“Nothing has changed from our perspective: we will not pursue Skyland, Capitol Gateway and New York Avenue and will start to review the financial and legal implications on the three stores already under construction,” said Steven Restivo, spokesman for Wal-Mart, after the Council approved the vote on Wednesday afternoon. “This was a difficult decision for us – and unfortunate news for most D.C. residents – but the Council has forced our hand.”

Restivo told ABC News the company would reconsider if Mayor Vincent Gray vetoes the bill. Mayor Gray has 10 days to sign the bill, veto it or let it pass without his signature.

The so-called “living wage” through the council’s Large Retailer Accountability Act (LRAA) was one of many issues in the council’s long agenda on Wednesday.

ABC News |