5/10/2013 10:20:00 AM Local House Reps vote no on hiking state's minimum wage
by DENISE MARTIN
The federal hourly minimum wage is at $7.25. Action that made it through the MN House May 3 will hike the state’s minimum wage rate; but it’s a somewhat complicated process that was enacted. The Senate also still needs to pass its own version of an hourly minimum wage. The state is now at $6.15 per hour.
The bill adopted starts hiking the minimum wage this summer. There’s two sets of wage scales, one for small and one for “large employers.” A large business is defined as having more than $500,000 gross sales volume annually. The wage goes to $8 an hour beginning Aug 1, 2013. As of Aug. 1 2014 it will be $9 an hour and $9.50 by Aug. 2015.
Small businesses with less than $500,000 gross sales volume will have an hourly minimum of $7 by Aug. 2013; $8 by Aug 2014 and $8.50 an hour by Aug 2015. Additionally the legislature agreed there’d be a different wage for employees younger than age 20. During their first 90 days on the job wages could be $6.96. Annually their pay could be at $7.48 and then $7.93 hourly. Starting in 2015 the legislative action in the HOuse calls for minimum wage to be tied to rate of inflation.
Area state Representatives Bob Barrett, Bob Dettmer and Brian Johnson all opposed the final bill that squeaked by 68-62 increasing Minnesota’s minimum wage. The bill also increases time for family leave for people wokring in businesses that employ 21 to 49 workers. They’ll get up to 12 weeks, which will match current federal law. The 12 weeks already applies to businesses with 50 or more employees.