Minnesota minimum wage set to rise with inflation in 2018

The minimum wage will rise by 15 cents to $9.65 per hour for most businesses around the state.

By Erin Golden Star Tribune
AUGUST 17, 2017 – 11:38PM

Minnesota’s minimum wage will increase next year by 15 cents to keep up with inflation, rising to $9.65 per hour for workers at many businesses across the state.

The increase, announced Thursday by the Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry, is effective Jan. 1, 2018. It’s the result of a 2014 law that boosted the minimum wage to $9.50 and required the state to begin calculating automatic inflationary increases for each year, starting with 2018.

About 250,000 Minnesota workers earn less than $9.65 per hour. Gov. Mark Dayton and Lt. Gov. Tina Smith said in a statement that the wage bump is aimed at helping those residents build economic stability.

“Our state and nation was founded on the belief that hard work and opportunity should go hand in hand,” Smith said. “Raising the minimum wage will help make this value a reality for thousands of Minnesotans, many of them people of color and women with children.”
The new rate applies to workers at businesses with annual gross revenue of $500,000 or more. Employees at businesses with lower revenue, who now make $7.75 per hour, will see their minimum wage rise by 12 cents, to $7.87 per hour. That will also be the new training rate for workers younger than 20 for the first 90 days of employment, and for youth workers under age 18.

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North America’s Building Trades Unions Succeeds in Beating Back 3 Anti-Prevailing Wage Amendments

09/11/2017 – 3:47pm

As the U.S. House of Representatives was voting last week on appropriations bills to keep the federal government running, Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa) attempted to amend every piece of legislation to undo Davis-Bacon protections that ensure fair prevailing wages are paid on publicly funded construction projects.

Fortunately, King’s efforts to cut wages have been unsuccessful. Every Democratic member and 54 Republicans voted “no,” on all three of King’s amendments. Each vote on King’s three amendments failed 173-240, with 54 Republicans siding with all Democrats in voting “no.” Every member of the Massachusetts delegation voted “no” in support of fair wages for America’s building trades workers.

Prevailing wage standards are a minimum wage for skilled construction work on publicly funded projects – including bridges, roads, water projects, tunnels, pipelines, municipal buildings, courthouses, schools and libraries. It is a market determination based on government surveys of the average pay rate (wages, fringe benefits, training contributions) for each construction craft in a geographic area. These standards are intended not only promote a level playing field for local businesses, but to support the training programs needed to prepare local workers for careers in the skilled crafts.

Research consistently shows that prevailing wage standards lead to better economic and industry outcomes – including more local jobs, less poverty, and safer, more efficient and productive worksites – with no significant impact on total project costs.

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Wage theft is widespread, but politics and policies can play a powerful role in reducing it.

Wage theft is pervasive in America; in a new study of low-wage workers across the US, Daniel J. Galvin finds that 16 percent were paid less than their state’s minimum wage. He also finds that workers in those states which had greater employment law protections tended to have a lower chance of experiencing wage theft, and that those protections tended to be in states with unified Democratic governments. With Donald Trump’s Labor Department unlikely to do much to address the problem, he writes that workers’ advocates will need to build coalitions and work with Democrats at the state and city level in order to ensure workers are protected from wage theft. 


Daniel J. Galvin

Wage theft is pervasive, but often remains hidden. When employers cheat employees out of the wages they’ve earned, few complain out of fear they’ll be fired, deported, or abused. Indeed, as the Trump administration has begun more aggressive deportations, immigrant workers have already become less likely to come forward.

The cases of wage theft we are able to see are either brought to light through the bravery of workers who feel they must take a stand or through Department of Labor investigations, lawsuits brought by determined attorneys general like Eric Schneiderman of New York, or painstaking efforts to root them out by innovative state labor commissioners like Julie Su in California. Journalists have helped raise awareness as well.

A New York Times exposé of the nail salon industry in New York City, for example, revealed that new employees-usually undocumented immigrants-were often required to pay $100 for the opportunity to work, forced to “train” for weeks without pay, and were then paid as little as $30 a day for 12-hour days, six or seven days a week, all in violation of federal and state minimum wage and overtime laws.

Almost everything else we know about the problem comes from academic investigations. The most widely cited study, conducted back in 2008, surveyed 4,387 hard-to-reach low-wage workers in New York, Chicago, and Los Angeles and found that 26 percent had been paid less than the minimum wage in the previous week, with 60 percent underpaid by more than $1 per hour. More than three quarters of those who worked over 40 hours did not receive any overtime pay.

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Ensuring a Fair Day’s Pay

Kim Cullen
Jul 28, 2016

As employees join the “Fight for 15” and attempt to raise the minimum wage, many workers across the country are fighting just to collect last week’s paycheck. Now, following the example of other cities, counties, and states, Philadelphia ischanging the way it operates to make it easier for employees to collect the money they have earned and to deter employers from engaging in a practice known as wage theft.

Wage theft occurs when an employer does not pay an employee correctly. It takes many forms: failure to pay employees for hours they have worked, payment that is less than the minimum wage, failure to pay employees their proper overtime rate, and more. A recent report from Temple University’s Sheller Center for Social Justice estimates that in any given workweek, Pennsylvania employees lose between $19 and $32 million dollars due to wage theft. In the Philadelphia area alone, tens of thousands of wage theft cases occur every week. To address this reality, the Philadelphia City Council unanimously approved an ordinance that will increase the city’s capacity to enforce the state and federal wage laws that are designed to protect employees from wage theft.

The ordinance makes two important changes to Philadelphia’s current regulatory scheme. First, the ordinance creates a Wage Theft Coordinator position within the city government. The Coordinator will receive, review, and adjudicate new wage theft complaints. While adjudicating, the Coordinator will examine the evidence-which could include records of hours worked and rates of pay-and determine if an employer has violated any wage laws. If the employer is found guilty and refuses to comply with the judgment, the Coordinator will have the authority to take further action by filing a complaint in court.

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D.C. Commits to $15 Minimum Wage by 2020

July 13, 2016


Mayor Muriel Bowser signed legislation on June 27 that had been unanimously approved by D.C. Council to raise D.C.’s minimum wage to $15 per hour by 2020. The minimum wage was increased to $11.50 on July 1 in accordance with a 2013 D.C. amendment, but the wage will rise faster from year to year because of the new Fair Shot Minimum Wage Amendment Act of 2016.

The legislation also increases base-pay for tipped workers, though many advocates have argued in favor of one minimum wage for all. “We believe that D.C. should follow the model of more and more jurisdictions around the country,” testified DC Fiscal Policy Institute Senior Analyst Ilana Boivie at a May hearing about the bill, “to eliminate the subminimum wage for tipped workers altogether, to address the severe income stability and other challenges these workers face.” District employers are responsible for making up the difference if their employees’ tips do not add up to at least minimum wage.

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Oregon Issues Rules In Advance Of New Minimum Wage Law

by Chris Lehman
June 15, 2016 5:56 p.m.
Updated: June 15, 2016 7 p.m.

Oregon employers have new guidance from the state on how much to pay their employees when the state’s minimum wage goes up next month. The Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries released rules Wednesday meant to clear up one of the questions surrounding the legislatively-approved minimum wage hike.

The state’s minimum wage goes up July 1, but the amount of the increase depends on where you work. The wage goes up 25 cents per hour in rural counties and 50 cents per hour everywhere else. Next year, the state moves to a three-tiered system which gives workers in the Portland metro area a higher rate than the rest of the state.

But what about workers whose job sometimes takes them across the boundaries of the state’s three-tiered minimum wage map? Employers are worried they’d have to keep meticulous track of how much time any given worker spent in any given place.

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Miami Beach commission approves minimum wage raise

JUNE 8, 2016

MIAMI BEACH, FLA. (WSVN) – The Miami Beach City commission unanimously approved an ordinance establishing a city-wide minimum living wage increase.

The ordinance, which was first proposed by Mayor Philip Levine and co-sponsored by all six city commissioners, will take effect January 1, 2018, and gradually increase over four years until 2021. The minimum living wage will be first set at $10.31 and will increase over four years to $13.31.

The new minimum wage will apply to all workers employed in the City of Miami Beach and those covered by the federal minimum wage.

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Minimum Wage Hike Approved by San Diego Voters

The proposition not only raises the minimum wage to $10.50 but also gives workers five days of paid sick leave.

By Liberty Zabala
Published at 7:43 AM PDT on Jun 8, 2016


San Diego voters made their support for a minimum wage increase very clear when they went to the ballot box Tuesday.

Proposition I was approved by 63 percent of voters, clearing the way for an immediate increase to the city’s minimum wage.

The proposition not only raises the minimum wage to $10.50 but also gives workers five days of paid sick leave.

In January, the minimum wage will be boosted to $11.50 an hour.

The state also approved a similar hike to $15 an hour minimum wage.

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City Hall Tells How It Proposes to Enforce Pasadena’s New Minimum Wage (CA)

City Hall’s monitoring, enforcement plan calls for hiring a compliance officer, new duties for multiple city departments and a $204,000 budget

by EDDIE RIVERA, Community Editor
Wednesday, May 4, 2016 | 4:56 AM

Following Pasadena’s passage in March of a new ordinance which will raise the minimum wage in the city to $15 an hour by 2020, both business owners and people who work in Pasadena were left with two major questions – how will this raise actually be implemented and monitored, and how will the new law be enforced?

City Hall’s Minimum Wage Internal Working Group has a plan. The detailed proposal was made public last Thursday in an informational report.

The Group is recommending that the overall program be administered by a code compliance manager working within the department of Planning and Community Development. The initial outreach of the ordinance to media, residents and businesses, will be managed by the Council’s Economic Development Committee, and the City’s public information officer. Staff training in the legal requirements of the ordinance will be handled by the City Attorney’s office.

Consumer outreach and education will be managed by the consumer action teams of the Recreation and Human Services Department, who will also manage intake and complaints regarding wage enforcement and refer them to the Code Compliance manager. Egregious cases may also be referred to the Prosecutor’s Office, working with the Police Department.

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(Mayor) Cranley proposes minimum wage boost for city employees to $15 per hour

Sen. Sherrod Brown joins mayor for announcement

BY: Kristen Swilley, Austin Fast
POSTED: 11:53 AM, Mar 29, 2016
UPDATED: 5:54 PM, Mar 29, 2016

CINCINNATI — Full-time city employees could soon be earning a minimum wage of $15 per hour, among other labor reforms aimed at strengthening the middle class that were announced Tuesday morning by Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) and Mayor John Cranley

The reform package announced Tuesday includes three components:

  • Raising Cincinnati’s living wage from $12.58 to $15 per hour for its full-time (at least 30 hours per week) employees and from $8.25 to $10.10 per hour for its part-time and seasonal workers. Going forward, these increase wage rates are indexed to the Consumer Price Index and will be adjusted annually;
  • Creating a city prevailing wage law that dramatically expands the types and number of government subsidies that trigger prevailing wage requirements. If triggered, the city’s prevailing wage requirements would apply when the state’s requirements are not triggered.
  • Implementing crane safety measures (following a crane accident at The Banks in February) to ensure all crane operators in the city are qualified and all crane operators are appropriately insured.


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