Earlier this year, President Obama called for an increase in the federal minimum wage - to at least $9 an hour. President Obama has also proposed indexing the minimum wage to inflation, so it would increase when the cost of living increases. A new poll reports that 80% of Americans - including 92% of Democrats, 62% of Republicans and 80% of Independents - are in favor of raising the minimum wage to $10.10 per hour and indexing it to the cost of living.
In addition, Christine Owens, Executive Director, National Employment Law Project (NELP), has issued a statement calling for an increase in the minimum wage saying, "It's clear what needs to be done. It's time to raise the federal minimum wage--raise it over time to $10.10 an hour. Boost the guaranteed minimum wage rate for tipped workers, which has been stuck at $2.13 since 1991. And index the overall minimum wage to the cost of living."
The Fair Minimum Wage Act of 2013 has been introduced in the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives. If passed, it would raise the federal minimum wage from $7.25 to $10.10 per hour by 2015, and adjust it each year after that to keep up with the rising cost of living. The legislation would also increase the minimum wage for employees who receive tips.
The legislation is currently in committee and would need to be passed by both the Senate and the House for the increases to go into effect. Until legislation is passed there will be no date set for a minimum wage increase.
- Arizona - $7.80
- Colorado - $7.78
- Florida - $7.79
- Missouri - $7.35
- Montana - $7.80
- Ohio - $7.85
- Oregon - $8.95
- Rhode Island - $7.75
- Vermont - $8.60
- Washington - $9.19
New York has passed an increase in the minimum wage to $9 per hour which goes into effect over 3 years, starting at the of 2013. There will be an increase to $8 per hour at the end of the year, followed by an increase to $8.75 a year later, then to $9 per hour the following year.
In addition, legislation has been passed in California that will increase the state minimum wage from $8 per hour to $10 an hour starting July 1, 2014 with an increase to $9 per hour. Here's information on California minimum wage increases.
The federal minimum wage remains at $7.25 per hour. The last increase was in 2009. If an employee is subject to both the state and federal minimum wage laws, the employee is entitled to the higher of the two minimum wages.
What do you think? Should minimum wage be raised?