California’s Minimum Wage Set to Increase Starting Jan. 1

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The California State Capitol building is seen in a file photo. (Credit: Los Angeles Times)

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Minimum wage workers in California will see a bump in hourly pay in 2016, as the rate increases by a dollar to $10 per hour beginning Jan. 1.

“This increase in the minimum wage is California’s second increase in 18 months. Those earning minimum wage will now have a bit more to take home every paycheck,” California Labor Commissioner Julie Su said in a news release from the state’s Department of Industrial Relations on Monday.

The raise is the result of legislation signed by Gov. Jerry Brown in 2013, which increased the state’s minimum wage initially to $9 per hour on July 1, 2014, before the additional pay bump at the start of 2016, according to the release.

Prior to 2014, the hourly minimum wage in California hadn’t been raised in about 6 years.

State law requires nearly all employees in California to be paid at least minimum wage, the release stated. Those paid less than that can file a claim with the Labor Commission’s office, a division of the Department of Industrial Relations.

Some cities in California, including San Francisco, Oakland and Emeryville, have already established minimum wages higher than state laws mandates, according to the Legislative Analyst’s Office. The minimum wage in each of those cities is above $12 per hour in 2015.

Earlier this year, the Los Angeles City Council approved a plan to raise the city’s minimum wage to $15 per hour by 2020.

California is one of seven states in the U.S. with a minimum wage of at least $9 per hour, the Legislative Analyst’s Office said in July. The federal minimum wage is currently $7.25 per hour and has not increased since 2009.


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