The City Council is poised for a vote Tuesday on raising the minimum wage. Last Friday, Mayor Rahm Emanuel sent a letter out to aldermen informing them of the special meeting on Dec. 2. How high will it go? Paris Schutz has the details.
On the Nov. 4, 2014 ballot, Illinois voters overwhelming supported an advisory amendment for the state to raise the minimum wage to $10 an hour from its current rate of $8.25 by Jan. 1, 2015. Eighty-eight percent of Chicago voters approved raising the minimum wage and 67 percent of the voters statewide voted in favor of the increase. But this was only an advisory amendment. There’s a bill being floated in Springfield to gradually increase the minimum wage to $11 by July 1, 2017. But Chicago aldermen may trump Illinois lawmakers.
As of Sept. 1, 2014, 23 states and the District of Columbia have minimum wages that are higher than the federal minimum wage of $7.25, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. The federal minimum wage has been $7.25 since 2009. Nineteen states have a minimum wage equal to the federal minimum wage. Three states have minimum wages that are less than $7.25, and five states don’t require a minimum wage.
Four states - Alaska, Arkansas, Nebraska and South Dakota –approved minimum wage increases through ballot measures in the 2014 election. Nine other states will raise the minimum wage on Jan. 1, 2015 because of indexed increases by state law (based on either a cost of living factor or because the rate is tied to the Consumer Price Index, depending on the state). States raising the minimum wages are Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Missouri, Montana, New Jersey, Ohio, Oregon, and Washington.
View a map of minimum wages across the United States.
--Map created by Kristen Thometz