Executive Summary: With 2018 winding down, employers should be prepared for the minimum wage increases that are expected in the New Year. Even though the federal minimum wage has stagnated at $7.25 per hour since 2009, state legislatures have been active in increasing their respective minimum wage rates. In 2019, 21 states will increase their state’s minimum wage rate, with 18 of those increases taking effect on New Year’s Day or New Year’s Eve.
Articles Discussing the Minimum Wage Under State Laws.
While the federal minimum wage has remained stalled at $7.25 an hour since 2009, there has been significant movement at the state level, with some states enacting a minimum wage rate that is now more than double the federal level.
The November mid-term elections resulted in some significant power shifts at the state level. Six states (Colorado, Illinois, Maine, Nevada, New Mexico, and New York) that had been politically divided now enjoy a Democratic “trifecta” – meaning the state house, senate, and governor are all affiliated with the same party.1 Alaska, meanwhile, whose current governor is an Independent, will have a Republican governor in 2019, making that state solidly red. Four states (Kansas, Michigan, New Hampshire, and Wisconsin) in which the Republican Party had enjoyed a legislative trifecta, are now politically divided.
The dishes are done, the leftovers are gone, and you are back at work. Were new laws enacted while you were conked out in a tryptophan-induced nap? Keep reading for all the November updates about the minimum wage, tips, and overtime.
Minimum wage laws can impact businesses of all sizes, whether operating nationwide, in multiple jurisdictions, or only in one state, county, or city. To help manage this challenge, we are publishing a rates-only update detailing state- and local-level wage increases that are scheduled to occur throughout 2019 so employers can determine the minimum amount they must pay non-exempt, tipped, and certain exempt employees.
The leftovers are (mostly) gone, and turkey-induced naps have been taken, but if you think a post-Thanksgiving minimum wage and overtime update will be uneventful, you are mistaken. Jurisdictions continue to announce 2018 minimum wage rates,1 cities have amended existing or introduced new minimum wage ordinances, state legislators have pre-filed 2018 bills, and a lawsuit challenging a forthcoming local law has been filed.
The federal minimum wage has remained stagnant at $7.25 an hour since 2009. In the absence of an increase to the federal minimum wage, an increasing number of states, cities, and other municipalities have enacted statutes providing for minimum wage rates in excess of (and, in some cases, more than twice as high as) the federal rate.
Just under halfway through 2017, minimum wage and overtime developments have shifted into overdrive. Proposals submitted by federal legislators from both sides of the aisle highlight the different approaches the country’s main political parties take to tackling labor and employment issues. States and counties struggle to assert their legislative dominance over their governmental subordinates. And local councils and agencies continue to push existing and proposed minimum wage ordinances.
Since we published our annual article discussing minimum wage rates in 2017,1 many state and local jurisdictions have adjusted their minimum wage rates, state legislative sessions have begun, signatures have been collected for ballot measures, and officials have hinted at policies they intend to pursue. One particularly interesting development we have seen is the emergence of several anti-preemption bills, or bills designed to upend the trend in recent years of state laws preempting the development of local minimum wage rates that would exceed the state or federal minimum wage rates.
With the federal minimum wage stalled at $7.25 an hour since 2009, states, counties, and local governments have increasingly stepped in and passed legislation raising the minimum wage above the federal level. Because federal law does not prevent other jurisdictions from passing laws that are more protective of employees (the federal law establishes only a floor), the higher minimum wage rate in the employer’s jurisdiction applies.
Employers with employees in New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut should expect more than just holiday cheer this New Year. Increases in those state’s minimum wages may also bring about increased costs for businesses and organizations that utilize low-wage earners.
The 2014 federal minimum wage will remain unchanged at $7.25 per hour for non-tipped employees, and $2.13 per hour for tipped employees. However, one state’s minimum wage will increase on December 31, 2013 and eight states have announced their minimum wage will increase on January 1, 2014. Moreover, one state has proposed an increase, effective January 1, 2014.
With the New Year comes a minimum wage increase in 10 states: Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Missouri, Montana, Ohio, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont and Washington. Each of these states has a higher minimum wage rate than the federal minimum of $7.25/hour. Employers in these states are required to pay the higher state minimum wage.