These 20 States Are Raising Minimum Wage Starting January 1


Several states across the US are raising their minimum wage rates. The increases are a part of scheduled raises to adjust workers’ salaries to higher cost-of-living rates. 

Some states are making the increases to get closer to their goal of raising minimum wage to a rate of $15 an hour. 

On a federal level, the minimum wage rate of $7.25 an hour hasn’t changed since 2009. In 2021, some states will continue to use this as their starting point in setting their minimum wage rates. 

The highest the federal minimum wage rate has been was in 1968 when it was $1.60 per hour, or $12 in today’s dollar value.

Here’s a look at the 20 states raising their minimum wage starting January 1, 2021. 

Alaska

New minimum wage: $10.34 Increased by: $0.15 

Arizona

New minimum wage: $12.15 Increased by: $0.15

Arkansas

New minimum wage: $11.00 Increased by: $1.00

California

New minimum wage: $14.00 Increased by: $1.00

Colorado

New minimum wage: $12.32 Increased by: $0.32

Florida

New minimum wage: $8.65 Increased by: $0.09

Illinois

New minimum wage: $11.00 Increased by: $1.00

Maine

New minimum wage: $12.15 Increased by: $0.15

Maryland

New minimum wage: $11.75 Increased by: $0.75

Massachusetts

New minimum wage: $13.50 Increased by: $0.75

Minnesota

New minimum wage: $10.08 Increased by: $0.08

Missouri

New minimum wage: $10.30 Increased by: $0.85

Montana

New minimum wage: $8.75 Increased by: $0.10

New Jersey

New minimum wage: $12.00 Increased by: $1.00

New Mexico

New minimum wage: $10.50 Increased by: $1.50

Ohio

New minimum wage: $8.80 Increased by: $0.10

South Dakota

New minimum wage: $9.45 Increased by: $0.15

Vermont

New minimum wage: $11.75 Increased by: $0.79

Washington

New minimum wage: $13.69 Increased by: $0.19

New York

New minimum wage: $12.50 Increased by: $0.70 (Goes into effect December 31, 2020)

The increases will affect low-wage workers who have been mostly significantly impacted by the economic toll of the pandemic. “We have lots of low-wage, service workers who are working through the COVID-19 crisis, many of whom are in jobs with a greater risk of transmission,” Ken Jacobs, head of the Center for Labor Research and Education at the University of California-Berkeley told CNN. “This will be a very welcome boost for them. As well, a lot of families are struggling right now in this crisis.” 

Some small business advocates are worried about how the increase will impact an already fragile economic situation. In New York, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced the increase would still go into effect, citing an analysis that indicates it wouldn’t be a detriment to small businesses. 

Some states, like Michigan, were forced to pause their scheduled pay increases given a state law that prohibits minimum wage increase when the state’s unemployment rate is above 8.5%. 

President-elect Joe Biden has said he would like to raise the federal minimum wage to $15 an hour, but that will depend on Senate support. He will have the power, however, to increase federal contractors’ salaries to $15 an hour through an executive order. 

News of the increases come as another 787,000 Americans file first-time jobless claims this week.

Photo: Getty Images


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