Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Minnesota Legislature Expected to Pass Minimum Wage Increase

The Star Tribune is reporting that Minnesota legislators have reached a deal that will increase Minnesota’s minimum wage for most employers to $9.50 per hour by 2016. When the proposed law is passed and signed by Governor Dayton, Minnesota will join 21 other states and the District of Columbia in having a minimum wage that exceeds the current federal law minimum of $7.25 per hour. Currently, the state of Washington has the highest minimum wage, coming in at $9.32 per hour.  The U.S. Department of Labor provides a summary of state minimum wage rates on its website: 

Source: U.S Department of Labor 
In addition to state wage rates that exceed the federal minimum, a number of local municipalities have enacted minimum wage ordinances setting rates that exceed federal minimum wage. The federal wage and hour law permits states and local governments to impose higher wage rates than federal law, and employers subject to varying laws typically must comply with the law most generous to an employee. As such, employers that operate in multiple locations must continue to be mindful of the special wage rules and other location-specific requirements that apply where they operate. 

Minnesota’s minimum wage action comes on the heels of other impending changes to wage and hour requirements. President Obama has taken executive action to increase the minimum wage paid by federal contractors and, as we previously reported, to increase the minimum weekly salary needed for an employee to be exempt from overtime pay requirements. We will be continuing to watch and advise you of these wage and hour developments.

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