The Department of Labor & Industries recently announced that the minimum wage for 2015 will increase to $9.47 per hour – up from this year’s rate of $9.32.
While most of agriculture pays a rate higher than minimum wage, raising the base rate affects all employee wages and has a compounding harmful impact when farmers face mounting input costs and receive the same amount of money for their products.
The federal minimum wage is $7.25 per hour. For businesses and growers that compete directly with similar businesses in other states, Washington’s higher minimum wage rate places them at a competitive disadvantage.
Because Washington voters approved Initiative 688 in 1998, our state minimum wage is recalculated each year in keeping with increases in the Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W). Washington currently has the distinction of being the state with the highest minimum wage in the country.
To read the news release by L&I, go here.