Tuesday, August 22, 2006

California minimum wage to go to $8 an hour

August 21, 2006

• Governor, Legislature reach agreement
• To be phased in

California’s minimum wage would rise to $8 an hour in two steps under a deal reached Monday between Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and legislative leaders.

It would be an increase of $1.25 an hour.

Once the agreement is signed into law, the minimum wage will increase by 75 cents in January 2007 and by 50 cents in January 2008.

The deal replaces two earlier proposals – one by the Legislature which would have increased the minimum to $7.75 an hour but tied it to the cost of living so future increases would be automatic, and the other by the governor to increase the minimum to $7.75 an hour with no automatic increases.

"I have always said that when the economy was ready, we should reward the efforts of California's hard working families by raising our minimum wage,” Mr. Schwarzenegger says Monday in a written statement. “Since January, I have been working with my partners in the Legislature to find a common sense solution that will lead to a higher wage for working Californians without negatively impacting our jobs climate."

The California minimum wage is currently $6.75 per hour, a level it reached four years ago. It’s the same as in Hawaii but lower than the minimum wages in Oregon, Washington and Alaska. The federal minimum is $5.15 per hour.

The formal announcement of the agreement is to be made Tuesday.


CA must be nearing election time...