State Minimum Wage Watch 2013

A number of states have announced they will be raising their minimum wages in 2013 – primarily those states that index the wage floor to inflation. Ten states (Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, Ohio, Oregon, Vermont, and Washington) currently have minimum wages that are linked to a consumer price index. For these states, the minimum wage is usually increased each year, generally around the first of the year. For example, on January 1, 2012, eight of these states increased their wages: the two holdouts were Missouri and Nevada.

Although most states establish their own minimum wages legislatively (5 states – Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi, South Carolina and Tennessee – don’t have an established minimum wage requirement), federal minimum wage law supersedes state law. That means if the minimum wage established by the state is higher than the federal rate, the state rate applies. If the state’s minimum rate is lower than the federal rate, the federal rate applies.


Current State Minimum Wages

Source: U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics,

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are only 4 states – Arkansas, Georgia, Minnesota and Wyoming – that have a minimum wage set below the federal rate. In those states, federal requirements supersede state requirements and the federal rate of $7.25/hour applies. Twenty-three states have a minimum wage that is the same as the federal rate. Eighteen states plus D.C. have rates higher than the federal rate, ranging from a low of $7.40/hour in Michigan and Rhode Island to a high of $9.04/hour in Washington.


State Minimum Wage in the News


10/1/12: Colorado Proposes Raising Minimum Wage to $7.78

Starting January 1, 2013, Colorado's minimum wage will increase by 14 cents to $7.78 per hour, under a new wage order proposed by the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment. Colorado adjusts its minimum wage each year to keep pace with the rate of inflation, as measured by the change in the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers, All Items, for the Denver-Boulder-Greeley combined metropolitan statistical area. Nine other states also annually adjust their minimum wages based on the rate of inflation.

A public hearing about the proposed wage order will be held in Denver on November 1. JD Supra


10/15/23: Florida’s minimum wage to hit $7.79 in January

Inflation will boost Florida’s minimum wage by 12 cents an hour next year, to $7.79, the state’s labor agency announced Monday. Each year, Florida recalculates the minimum that employers must pay workers, using a federal measure of inflation to see if the wage must increase. Workers who receive tips have a different minimum wage, and that will increase from $4.65 an hour to $4.77 as of Jan 1, 2013. Miami Herald


10/3/12: Montana minimum wage will increase in 2013Montana, which is one of 18 states with a minimum wage higher than the federal requirement, will increase it again in January. The federal minimum wage is $7.25 per hour, and Montana's will rise from $7.65 to $7.80 per hour in order to help offset a cost of living increase.

New Jersey

10/15/12: N.J. minimum wage resolution gets hearing

Senate Democratic leaders argued Monday (10/15) that the state’s minimum wage needs future regular increases – and are banking on the state’s residents agreeing with them. Under a resolution proposed by Senate President Steve Sweeney, voters would face a question on the 2013 ballot proposing an amendment to the Constitution to not only raise the minimum wage by $1 to $8.25, but also to tie future increases to the Consumer Price Index, a measure of inflation. The Record


9/29/12: Minimum wage to rise 15 cents in Ohio in 2013

The Ohio minimum wage is set to increase by 15 cents to $7.85 an hour starting Jan. 1, 2013, the Ohio Department of Commerce said Friday. For employees who receive tips, the new minimum wage will increase to $3.93, the state commerce department added. The new minimum wage rates will apply to employees of businesses with annual gross receipts of more than $288,000 a year as of Jan. 1. Currently, the 2012 rates apply to business with gross receipts of $283,000 annually. Toledo Blade


9/17/12: Oregon's minimum wage will increase to $8.95 an hour in 2013

Oregon’s minimum wage will increase by 15 cents to $8.95 an hour next year, keeping pace with inflation. The uptick reflects a 1.7 percent increase in the Consumer Price Index since August 2011, state officials announced today. Statesman Journal


9/29/12: State minimum wage rising to $9.19 in 2013

Washington state’s minimum wage will increase to $9.19 an hour starting Jan. 1, according to the Department of Labor & Industries. The 15-cent increase from $9.04 an hour is based on a 1.67 percent increase in the Consumer Price Index for urban wage earners and clerical workers, as required by Initiative 688, which voters passed in 1998. Most of the increase in the index, which measures average price changes for goods and services, was the result of gas prices rising. Yakima Herald