(ABC4) – The minimum wage has been making headlines both nationally and locally. Should the federal minimum wage be raised? How would this affect Utah workers and businesses?
The Biden administration is facing some pushback in response to a call for a $15 federal minimum wage. The push was paired with a call for $1,400 stimulus checks in COVID-19 relief.
Utah Senator Mitt Romney introduced legislation to raise the federal minimum wage to $10 for legal workers, a move he says “would raise the floor for workers without costing jobs…” With a minimum wage of $7.25, this move would affect Utah.
In addition, two Utah lawmakers introduced bills calling for a raise the minimum wage. House Bill 284, sponsored by Rep. Clare Collard, would incrementally increase Utah’s annual minimum wage. Beginning at $12 an hour on or before July 1, 2021, it would increase annually to reach $15 an hour by or before July 1, 2026.
The bill also raises the minimum wage for tipped employees to $5 an hour from the current $2.13 an hour.
Here are current minimum wages by state and how Utah compares with the nation, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. United States territories are also included in the list.
States, territories with a higher than federal minimum wage (29 states):
Washington, D.C.: $15.00
New Jersey: $12.00
New Mexico: $10.50
New York: $12.50
Rhode Island: $11:50
South Dakota: $9.45
West Virginia: $8.75
Virgin Islands: $10.50
States, territories that meet federal minimum wage of $7.25 (16 states):
Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, Georgia, Iowa, Idaho, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, North Carolina, North Dakota, Hew Hampshire, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming, Puerto Rico
States with no minimum wage required:
Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi, South Carolina, Tennessee
According to MIT’s Living Wage Calculator, one adult with no children living in Utah must make at least $14.52 an hour in order to live. Visit the site to see if you make enough money to live in Utah.