Washington State’s minimum wage will increase to $9.32 per hour beginning January 1, 2014.
Washington is one of ten states that adjust their minimum wage annually based on inflation and the CPI. The others are Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, Ohio, Oregon, and Vermont.
Washington has had and will continue to have the highest state minimum wage in 2014, followed by Oregon, which recently announced its 2014 minimum wage will rise to $9.10 per hour.
Washington’s minimum wage applies to workers in both agricultural and non-agricultural jobs, although 14 and 15 year olds may be paid 85% of the adult minimum wage, or $7.92 per hour in 2014.
Washington has at least one city, Bellingham, with a “living wage” ordinance setting a minimum wage for contract service providers that is higher than the state minimum wage. There is also a ballot initiative in the City of SeaTac that, if passed this November, would create a $15 an hour minimum wage for certain hospitality and travel-related businesses in the SeaTac airport area.
There is no change in the salary basis requirements for exempt employees. Washington’s “white collar” overtime exempt regulations are nearly identical to the pre-August 2004 U.S. Department of Labor federal regulations. Thus, the Washington minimum salary for an overtime exempt worker is $250 per week versus the current federal minimum of $455 a week. Since most employers and employees are subject to the federal FLSA, the federal minimum of $455 a week is required for nearly all “white collar” overtime exempt employees in Washington.