December 27, 2011 in Business, Region

Wash. minimum wage jumping to $9.04 an hour

Associated Press
 

OLYMPIA — Washington state’s minimum wage increases by 37 cents to $9.04 an hour starting on New Year’s Day.

While the state’s current rate of $8.67 an hour is already the highest state minimum wage in the nation, a few cities, like San Francisco, have their own laws and have higher rates. San Francisco’s current rate of $9.92 jumps to $10.24 on Sunday, making it the first city in the nation to top a $10 minimum wage. The federal minimum wage is $7.25. Idaho’s minimum wage matches the federal wage, although employees who earn tips can be paid a wage as little as $3.35 per hour in Idaho.

Washington is among a handful of states where the minimum wage will increase Sunday.

Washington’s minimum wage is adjusted each year for inflation as measured by the Consumer Price Index for the past 12 months, which is up more than 4 percent. The yearly recalculation is required by Initiative 688, which was approved by Washington voters in 1998.

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