Oregon’s new minimum wage law does more than help workers get by—its novel design sets a national precedent.
Earlier this month, Governor Kate Brown signed legislation that would increase the state’s current minimum wage of $9.25 per hour by a set amount every year until 2022. The measures also provide for an annual adjustment after that point to keep pace with inflation.
The law is unique in that it implements a tiered system that sets separate minimums for different parts of the state. By 2022, the minimum hourly wage will be $14.75 in the Portland metro area, $13.50 in midsize counties, and $12.50 in rural areas. See a map of the different wages across the state on the Oregon Wage and Hour Division website.
In a statement, President Obama praised the news and called on Congress to act on the federal minimum wage, currently $7.25 an hour.
Oregon employers should note that increases will begin on July 1. For counties categorized as urban or midsized, that means a new $9.75 minimum effective this summer. For rural employers, $9.50. The Bureau of Labor and Industries is expected to provide an updated version of its mandatory minimum wage poster in the coming weeks.
Andy Przystanski is Content Marketing Manager at Namely, the all-in-one HR, payroll, and benefits platform built for today's employees. Connect with Andy and the Namely team on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.
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