Oregon Minimum Wage Increases Effective July 1st!

Posted by Christy Putnam on June 27, 2017 at 8:56 AM

Do you remember what minimum wage was when you stated your first job? Here's an idea of how much things have changed:

  • In 1968 the Oregon minimum wage was $1.25 per hour.
  • In 1981 it was $3.10 per hour.
  • In 1998 it increased to $6.00 per hour.

Effective July 1, 2017, the new Oregon minimum wage will range between $10.00 and $11.25 per hour, depending on where employers are located. In addition to the standard minimum wage, Oregon now sets separate rates for Portland Metro and Nonurban Counties. The differences have been established out of consideration for the varied cost of living in each area. Oregon will increase its minimum wage by $.50 to $.75 per hour in July each year until 2022.

It's important for employers to take note of the wage increase because the federal minimum wage continues to be $7.25 per hour (and has not been increased since July 2009), but employers are required to pay the higher of the federal or state minimum wages. There are currently 29 states that have a higher than federal minimum wage requirement. The differences make it critical that HR professionals monitor the laws in locations where their specific organization operates.

Minimum wage increases will follow a specific schedule and may vary based on your specific location. Download our free infographic to see the future of the minimum wage in your area!

The Future of Oregon's Minimum Wage - Infographic - Bennett/Porter & Associates 

Related items to think about:

Minimum Wage Poster – An updated employer poster is available for your notices’ bulletin board. Now is a great time to review all notices, if you have not already done so this year, to make sure you have the most current posters displayed where employees can view them. The new minimum wage poster is available on the BOLI webpage.

ACA Healthcare Premium Affordability Test – Employers with at least 50 full-time employees are subject to the Employer Shared Responsibility Rules under the Affordable Care Act (ACA). These rules state that employers must offer health coverage that is “affordable” and provides “minimum value.” Employers who are assessing their health coverage strategies for plans that renew the end of 2017 or beginning of 2018, and who utilize the rate of pay safe harbor, will want to take note that the calculations should be based on the new minimum wage, and the affordability percentage for 2018 will be 9.56% to avoid penalty. Additional information on affordability testing can be found on the IRS website at Questions and Answers on Employer Shared Responsibility Provisions Under the Affordable Care Act.

Please refer to Senate Bill 1532 for additional detailed information on the minimum wage bill that was passed and signed into law in early 2016.

Topics: Human Resources, Minimum Wage

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