The federal minimum wage stage varies considerably from what many states across the country require businesses to pay their workers, but there is also a stark difference between states across the country.
$7.25 per hour is and has been the federal minimum wage standard since 2009. Georgia’s state minimum wage is actually $5.15 per hour, but the federal requirement trumps what is on the books in the Peach State. As shown in the map, many of the $7.25 per hour states are a result of the federal standard superseding a lower state wage due to the Fair Labor Standards Act.
Interestingly, Alabama, South Carolina, and Tennessee do not have state minimum wages.
DC has the highest minimum wage rate at $11.50 per hour while Massachusetts and Washington state follow just behind at $11.00 per hour.
In 2017, 7 states automatically increased minimum wage numbers because of cost of living increases:
- New Jersey
- South Dakota
Five states increased the minimum wage rates through ballot initiatives passed by voters:
Seven states used the legislature to increase their wages:
- New York
You can read more on state-by-state findings here:
This chart shows state minimum wage rates in effect as of Jan. 1, 2017, as well as future enacted increases. Nineteen states begin the new year with increased minimum wages.