Montana minimum wage up to $7.80 next year

HELENA, Mont. -- The state Labor Department says Montana's minimum wage will increase by 15 cents an hour to $7.80 beginning on Jan. 1.

Labor Commissioner Keith Kelly said Tuesday the cost of living rose by 1.7 percent from August 2011 to August 2012, leading to the increase in minimum wage.

Montana voters approved Initiative 151 in 2006 adding a cost-of-living adjustment to the state minimum wage.