December 31, 2014

More States Than Ever Will Raise Their Minimum Wage On New Year's Day

If you're a minimum wage earner and of drinking age, be sure to raise a glass when the ball drops Wednesday night. There's a decent chance you'll be getting a pay raise.
Thanks to a raft of state-level laws and ballot measures this year, 20 states will be hiking their minimum wages on New Year's Day -- evidence of a growing nationwide move toward higher mandatory pay despite congressional inertia on the issue.
With a proposal to raise the $7.25 federal minimum wage to $10.10 languishing on Capitol Hill, more and more states are choosing to bypass Congress and raise the wage floor on their own. That trend has even come to red states like Alaska, Arkansas, Nebraska and South Dakota, where voters approved various minimum wage ballot measures in the November elections.
In addition to the 20 states bringing their wage floors up on Jan. 1, New York will be raising its own state minimum wage from $8 to $8.75 on Dec. 31. Due to the state's large population and the 75-cent increase, New York has the highest number of workers poised to benefit from this week's wage hikes -- a projected 711,000 people -- of any state raising its wages this week, according to EPI.

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