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The year of 2017 has been an eventful one for business orders across the United States with the many state minimum wage changes passing during the past year. Raising wages, along with increasing paid sick leave and other employee benefits, changes the whole structure of how a business functions. In some states, this has been celebrated a step forward in the right direction, while other states remain more skeptical about how such big changes will play out in the future. Whether you’re an employee, business owner, or are planning on finding work in another state soon, here are the things you should know about these changes in your state.

States that Raised Minimum Wage

It’s impressive to say that of the 50 states of the United States, 21 increased their state minimum wage. This means that 29 states now have a minimum wage over the federal minimum of $7.25 (which has not been raised since 2009.) It should also be noted that 6 states do not have a set minimum, including Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi, South Carolina, and Tennessee. States like Arizona, Colorado, and Washington voted to have minimum wages raised whereas Alaska, Florida, and Ohio raised their minimum wage based on the of living. Washington’s change has placed them nearly at the top of the chain by increasing it to $11 an hour. Unfortunately, states like Georgia and Wyoming did not raise their minimum wages, which depicts their minimum wage as $5.15 an hour when not covered by the FLSA.

New Minimum Wage Laws for 2017

When examining the wage law changes of 2017, it can feel overwhelming to try and separate which state made which changes and how that might affect you. Here is a small breakdown of the top state minimum wage changes that involved more than just changing the number itself:

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  • Arizona: AZ voters notably approved Proposition 206, known as the Fair Wages and Healthy Families Act. This includes the state minimum wage raising to $10.00, which is due to raise to $10.50 by 2018, and requires earned paid sick time benefits to be available.
  • California: raised minimum wage to $10.00 for companies with fewer than 25 employees and $10.50 for those with 26 employees or more. Minimum wage is also scheduled to increase to $11 by the beginning of 2018.
  • Colorado: changed the minimum to $9.20 and expect to increase it to $10.20 by January of 2018.
  • Hawaii: Hawaii’s minimum wage is now $9.25 per hour with a scheduled increase to $10.10 per hour on January 1, 2018.
  • Maine: Having increased their minimum wage to $9.00 per hour, it is expected to grow to  $10.00 per hour by January of 2018.
  • Maryland: Similar to Hawaii, Maryland plans to increase the minimum to $9.25 per hour in July 2017. The minimum wage is also scheduled to increase to $10.10 by the following year.
  • Michigan: Michigan employees will now be paid a minimum of $8.90 per hour. It is scheduled to grow to $9.25 on January 1, 2018.
  • Ohio: Ohio employers will be expected to pay their employees a minimum of $8.15 per hour if their gross receipts equate that of $297,000 or more. If their gross receipts are less than that amount, they will only have to pay their employees a minimum of $7.25 an hour.
  • Oregon: by July of 2017, the Oregon minimum wage will be $10.25 per hour, however, the Portland metro rate will increase to $11.25 per hour; and the non-urban counties rate will increase to $10.00, according to HR Daily Advisor. By next year, the wage rate for Oregon,Portland metro, and non-urban counties will increase to $10.75, $12.00, and $10.50 per hour respectively.
  • Vermont: Vermont’s minimum wage has been raised to $10.00 per hour and will experience a slight increase to $10.50 per hour by January 1, 2018.
  • Washington: the minimum wage has been changed to $11.00 per hour since January of 2017. It is expected to increase to $11.50 per hour by the same time next year.
  • Washington D.C: will increase their minimum wage to the highest standard country-wide of $12.50 per hour on July 1, 2017. It is also scheduled to increase to $13.25 per hour on July 1, 2018.

Adjusting Your Payroll to Match New Wage Laws

As you can see, many states and businesses were affected by state minimum wage law changes this year. If you are a business owner of any sort, it’s crucial to adapt your payroll and company finances to the new wage law changes. Whether this means hiring fewer employees or  lessening your monthly expenses to save money, having professional assistance in these matters truly helps keep your company balanced and growing. PayTech offers services in payroll, HR support, and accounting and tax to assist your business in accommodate to these new changes. This way, your business will strive despite any new laws and you’ll always know that your assets are in good hands.

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