Thursday, June 29, 2017

Minimum Wage Roundup—Mid-Year 2017

The Navigator is about to sail off on a mid-year break.  Before we leave for the long holiday weekend, here’s an update on minimum wage legislation around the country.  In our 2016 year-end review, we wrote:

There was a lot of activity at the state and local levels related to minimum wageTwenty-five states, cities, and counties approved minimum wage increases for 11.8 million workers in 2016. In the November elections, voters in Arizona, Colorado, Maine, and Washington approved ballot measures to increase their state’s minimum wages, while South Dakota voters rejected an attempt to lower the minimum wage for youth workers. California, Oregon, New York City, and Washington D.C. approved future increases.

 Since then, as the result of new initiatives and the implementation of prior initiatives, there’s been plenty of action. Seven states (Alaska, Florida, Missouri, Montana, New Jersey, Ohio, and South Dakota) automatically increased their rates based on the cost of living. Five states (Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Maine, and Washington) increased their minimum wage rates through previously approved ballot initiatives. Seven states (California, Connecticut, Hawaii, Massachusetts, Michigan, New York, and Vermont) increased minimum wage as a result of legislation passed in previous sessions. On July 1, the District of Columbia, Maryland, and Oregon will raise their minimum wage pursuant to previously enacted legislation.

In May, the Missouri legislature passed legislation specifically designed to preempt a St. Louis minimum wage ordinance. St. Louis’s $10 minimum wage took effect May 5 after the Missouri Supreme Court upheld the city’s right to implement an $11 minimum wage by 2018. If the governor does not veto it, the state legislation would preempt and nullify any local law establishing a minimum wage higher than Missouri’s minimum wage of $7.70 per hour.

Many cities in California have minimum wage ordinances that require hourly pay in excess of that required by federal or California state law.  California changes effective in 2017 are set out in this comprehensive chart from Paywizard.

Activity around the country is tracked in this compilation and this interactive wage tracker chart.

Mandatory minimum wage increase have been front and center in the past week as two studies with diverging results have claimed to demonstrate the effects of Seattle’s minimum wage law, which took effect three years ago. Stay tuned, because there’s more to come.  In Minnesota, Minneapolis and St. Paul are working on $15 minimum wage proposals, and they are not alone.   
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We’ll be back on Wednesday, July 5 with an expanded version of That Is So Last Week.  In the meantime, have a happy and safe holiday weekend.

Posted by Laura Bartlow