The Law @ Work

State Minimum Wage Increases Across the Country

by John S. Gannon

Raises are in order for lots of minimum wage workers in 2017. Nineteen states—including Massachusetts, Connecticut, New York, Maine and Vermont—along with dozens of cities across the country, will see minimum wage increases at the start of the new year. In Massachusetts, the minimum wage will increase from $10/hour to $11/hour (the state’s updated Wage and Hour Law poster can be found here). Only the District of Columbia has a higher minimum wage at $11.50/hour. The Connecticut minimum wage goes up to $10.10/hour on January 1, Vermont increases to $10/hour the same day, and Maine to $9.00/hour. New York’s increases vary depending on employer size and location.

The increase in Massachusetts is the last of three planned wage hikes dating back to 2015 (that link also includes useful information on minimum wage increases for tipped employees).  Similarly, the increase in Connecticut is the last of several consecutive hikes going back to 2014. Other than the increases effective January 1, 2017, there are no current plans to raise the state minimum wage in either Massachusetts or Connecticut—at least for now.  Across the country, many states will significantly increase minimum wage rates over the next few years. For example, New York will increase the state minimum wage to $15/hour in some regions by 2019. California will hit $15/hour by 2022. Will Massachusetts and Connecticut join these states as part of a fight for $15 initiative? Only time will tell.

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