US Economy

16 states to raise minimum wage in 2016

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A rally for a $15 minimum hourly wage in New York City in 2015. The city raised its minimum wage to $15 in 2018, while New York State raised its minimum wage to $11.80 in December 2019, and that will increase statewide at the end of 2020 to $12.50.
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If you are among the United States' lowest earners, you could be in for a raise in 2016, depending on where you live.

Fourteen cities and counties in seven states — Washington, Oregon, New York, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, California and Montana — agreed to increase the minimum wage to $15 in 2015, according to a report by the National Employment Law Project, a national advocacy organization for employment rights of lower-wage workers.

These increases will take place over the course of several years, giving local businesses time to adjust to the hike.

While not all states will be adjusting rates to the $15 mark, at least 16 states — Alaska, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Hawaii, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Nebraska, New York, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Vermont and West Virginia — will increase minimum wages in 2016.

These wage increases range from 5 cents an hour in South Dakota to a dollar in California, Massachusetts and Nebraska.

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"We've seen incredible momentum this past year in the fight to raise wages to a level that will make a meaningful difference to America's workers and their families," Christine Owens, executive director of the National Employment Law Project, said in a statement.

Here is the full list of states that will increase its minimum wage in 2016:

  • Alaska: $8.75 to $9.75
  • Arkansas: $7.50 to $8
  • California: $9 to $10
  • Colorado: $8.23 to $8.31
  • Connecticut: $9.15 to $9.60
  • Hawaii: $7.75 to $8.50
  • Maryland: $8 to $8.75
  • Massachusetts: $9 to $10
  • Michigan: $8.15 to $8.50
  • Minnesota: $9 to $9.50 (for larger employers) and $7.25 to $7.75 (for smaller companies)
  • Nebraska: $8 to $9
  • New York: $8.75 to $9
  • Rhode Island: $9 to $9.60
  • South Dakota: $8.50 to $8.55
  • Vermont: $9.15 to $9.60
  • West Virginia: $8 to $8.75

Additionally, eight states — Arizona, Florida, Missouri, Montana, New Jersey, Ohio, Oregon and Washington — may see small hikes to minimum wage due to cost-of-living increases.

Correction: This story has been updated to reflect that eight states may see small hikes to their minimum wage due to cost of living in 2016, that New York's minimum wage is rising from $8.75 and that at least 16 states will be raising the minimum wage in 2016.