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No increase in Washington minimum wage

Washington’s minimum wage will not increase next year.

The Department of Labor and Industries says it will remain at $8.55 an hour because inflation, as measured by the Consumer Price Index, did not increase for the past 12 months. It decreased about 2 percent.

Washington still has the highest minimum wage in the nation.

This is the first year there has not been an increase since voters approved an initiative in 1998 to adjust the minimum wage with inflation.

That’s good news to small businessmen like Scott Dickinson of Vancouver who owns eight KFC restaurants.

He told The Vancouver Columbian he had to cut his staff by 10 percent after January’s minimum wage hike.

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