Employees who receive tips for their services are getting their well-deserved raise; at least in five states plus Washington, D.C. this year. In a recent report by the Huffington Post, Minnesota became just the latest state to pass legislation that would allow tipped workers to obtain a raise, with the state government guaranteeing “them the same $9.50 hourly minimum wage that other workers will get.” The other five four states are Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland and West Virginia.
With the state not having to put up a separate legislation for giving tipped employees their raise, the state is just one of the seven states that require employers to pay their workers the minimum wage, regardless if they are tipped or not. The other states are Alaska, California, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, and Washington State.
This is in stark contrast to Delaware and West Virginia, which opted to create legislation that would provide workers increased tips that are separate from their likewise increased hourly minimum wage. For instance, Delaware’s minimum wage will be raised to $8.25, with tipped workers receiving a rate of $3.23 (from $2.23). West Virginia will provide tipped workers a tipped rate that is 30 percent of the state’s new hourly minimum wage, which is at $8.75.
Meanwhile, the State of Connecticut would also have an increase in its tipped rate as the state is set to increase its minimum wage over three years. By 2015, the state’s hourly minimum wage for tipped workers would be about 63 percent of the broader rate. As Connecticut is inching closer to the target of $10.10 hourly minimum wage rate, the tipped workers would by then receive their increased tipped rate of $6.38, up from $5.69.
In the Huffington Post report, U.S. Secretary of Labor Thomas Perez told a House panel a month ago that tipped employees “have been taking it on the chin in all too many states.” Indeed, tipped workers are often some of the many workers that have been overlooked for quite some time now, and giving them their well-deserved increase in their tips is one way to address the concerns of those who were lobbying for them.
Meanwhile, a Los Angeles labor lawyer, while not expecting to see an increase in the tips that tipped workers receive, is also keeping an eye on July of this year, which is the time the $9.00 increase in the overall minimum wage in the state is expected to take effect.