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California Poised To Become First State To Raise Minimum Wage to $15 per Hour

Publications - Client Alert | March 28, 2016

As the debate regarding a “living wage” looms large over the 2016 political season, California is set to become the first state to raise its minimum wage to $15 per hour. California lawmakers and labor unions reached a tentative deal on a proposed law to raise the state minimum wage to $10.50 in 2017 and gradually to $15 per hour by 2023. California would see its minimum wage grow to $11.00 in 2018 with $1 per year increases through 2022. Minimum wage increases would thereafter be linked to inflation. In the event of an economic downturn, the governor would have the power to temporarily block some of the initial increases. Businesses with fewer than 25 employees would have one extra year to comply with the proposed law. The proposed law would put the state closer in line with its largest city, Los Angeles, which approved a plan to gradually increase the minimum wage to $15 per hour in the city by 2020. The deal between unions and lawmakers also includes the gradual addition of three new paid sick days for government workers who provide in-home care to the disabled. The Legislature is expected to vote on the deal in the next two weeks. Once the bill is passed, Governor Jerry Brown is expected to sign it into law.

Additional Information

For more information about this proposal, please contact your Kutak Rock attorney or the author of this alert.