By Jeanne Mejeur

In something of a surprise move, Michigan hopped on the bandwagon of states that have passed minimum wage increases this session. Why a surprise? The Michigan Legislature is controlled by Republicans, not typically in favor of minimum wage hikes. The measure, Senate Bill 934, was passed on May 28 and signed into law the same day by Governor Rick Snyder.

The new law raises Michigan’s minimum wage to $8.15 on Sept. 1, 2014, with subsequent increases to $8.50, $8.90 and $9.25, taking effect Jan. 1 of 2016, 2017 and 2018, respectively. Beginning in January 2019, Michigan’s minimum wage will increase automatically based on the cost of living.

Supporters of a minimum wage increase in Michigan have been collecting signatures to get a measure on the ballot for the 2014 elections. The organizers of “Raise Michigan” were proposing annual hikes that would bring Michigan’s minimum wage to $10.10 by 2017, including for tipped workers.

Michigan joins Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Maryland, Minnesota, West Virginia and D.C., which have enacted increases so far in 2014. The legislature in Vermont also passed an increase but the bill hasn’t yet been signed, although the Vermont governor has indicated he intends to do so.

Currently, Washington still has the highest state minimum wage, at $9.32, and is increased annually based on the cost of living. With the increases passed in 2013 and 2014 sessions, five states and D.C. are poised to break the $10 minimum wage threshold.


Future Scheduled Increases at $10 or Over


$10.00 Jan. 1, 2016


$10.10 Jan. 1, 2017


$10.50 July 1, 2015

$11.50 July 1, 2016


$10.10 Jan. 1, 2018


$10.10 July 1, 2018


$10.00 Jan. 1, 2017

$10.50 Jan. 1, 2018


As of June 1, 22 states and D.C. will have state minimum wages above the federal minimum wage of $7.25.

Jeanne Mejeur tracks labor issues for NCSL.

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This blog offers updates on the National Conference of State Legislatures' research and training, the latest on federalism and the state legislative institution, and posts about state legislators and legislative staff. The blog is edited by NCSL staff and written primarily by NCSL's experts on public policy and the state legislative institution.


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