State senators voted early this morning to raise Connecticut’s hourly minimum wage to $15.00 by June 1, 2023 in a plan that involves five annual increases. House Bill 5004, “An Act Increasing the Minimum Fair Wage,” was proposed to provide more economic security to Connecticut families by increasing the minimum fair wage. The current minimum wage in Connecticut is $10.10 per hour. Under the bill, minimum wage would increase gradually as follows:

  • $11.00 on October 1, 2019;
  • $12.00 on September 1, 2020;
  • $13.00 on August 1, 2021;
  • $14.00 on July 1, 2022; and
  • $15 on June 1, 2023.

After that date, any additional increases will correspond to the federal Employment Cost Index calculated by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Other proposed changes concern training and youth wage and tip credit for servers and bartenders employed in the hotel and restaurant industry. Governor Lamont is expected to sign the bill into law, which will take effect on October 1 of this year.  Connecticut will be joining its neighbors New York, Massachusetts and New Jersey – which have already passed scheduled increases for a $15 minimum wage.

The federal minimum wage for covered nonexempt employees is $7.25 per hour.  However as indicated earlier, some states, cities, and counties have a higher minimum wage rate.  Employers are required to pay workers the higher amount.

Employers operating in Connecticut should consider the effect the law will have on their payroll practices. As always, Murtha lawyers are available to discuss the state’s wage and hour law and assist employers with compliance and related issues.