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Minimum wage will increase 1.59% to $9.47/hour in 2015

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September 30, 2014

Tumwater – Washington's minimum wage will increase 15 cents to $9.47 an hour beginning Jan. 1, 2015, the Department of Labor & Industries (L&I) announced today.

L&I calculates the state's minimum wage each year at this time as required under Initiative 688, which Washington voters approved in 1998. The change reflects a 1.59 percent increase in the federal Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W) over the last 12 months ending Aug. 31. The federal Bureau of Labor Statistics announced the change in the CPI earlier this month.

The change will affect more than 67,000 workers, based on full-time equivalent positions according to the Washington State Employment Security Department. The per hour increase will total $312 per year.

The minimum wage applies to workers in all industries, including agriculture, although 14- and 15-year-olds can be paid 85 percent of the adult minimum wage, or $8.05 an hour.

Washington has the highest state minimum wage in the nation, followed by Oregon, where the minimum wage will increase to $9.25 — an increase of 15 cents — in 2015.

Washington is one of at least 10 states that adjust the minimum wage based on inflation and the CPI. Others include Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, Ohio, Oregon and Vermont.

L&I enforces the state's wage-and-hour laws. The agency investigates all the wage-payment complaints it receives, as required by state law. Workers can file a wage complaint online at, or by calling 1-866-219-7321.

More information on Washington's minimum wage is available at Employers and workers also may call 360-902-5316 or 1-866-219-7321.


For media information:
Matthew Erlich, L&I Public Affairs, 360-902-6508,
Bill Tarrow, ESD Communications Deputy Director, 360-902-9376,

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Broadcast version:
The Department of Labor and Industries says the state's minimum wage will increase by 15 cents to $9.47 an hour starting January 1, 2015.  An initiative passed by voters in 1998 requires L&I to annually calculate the minimum wage based on changes in the Consumer Price Index, which reflects the cost of goods and services needed for day-to-day living. That index rose by one-point-five-nine percent (1.59%) during the 12 months ending Aug.31. You can find more information at Wages dot Lni dot wa dot gov

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