The minimum wage in Rhode Island is set to increase by 25 cents, effective January 1, 2014, under legislation passed by Rhode Island’s General Assembly on June 27.
The $8.00 per hour minimum wage would make Rhode Island’s wage the third-highest in New England, behind Vermont ($8.60 per hour) and Connecticut (8.25 per hour). The federal minimum wage is $7.25, which has not changed since 2009; however, many states are taking it into their own hands to help those at the bottom of the pay scale make a little more to make ends meet.
For example, on March 29, 2013, New York lawmakers completed passage of new legislation that increases the New York State minimum wage in three stage, starting December 31, 2013. The NY increases are as followed:
$8.00 on and after December 31, 2013;
$8.75 on and after December 31, 2014; and
$9.00 on and after December 31, 2015.
Employers across the United States should prepare themselves. Rhode Island is only one of many states that has introduced and passed legislation to increase its minimum wage over the past year, and more should be expected to follow.