Federal minimum wage increases to $6.55 per hour

Thursday, July 31, 2008

In accordance with the provisions of the Fair Minimum Wage Act of 2007, the federal minimum wage increased to $6.55 per hour today. Employers can obtain copies of the new federal minimum wage poster and the "Handy Reference Guide to the Fair Labor Standards Act," and other reference tools by visiting the Internet site, http://www.wagehour.dol.gov.

The minimum wage poster can be directly accessed at http://www.dol.gov/esa/whd/regs/compliance/posters/flsa.htm, and the Handy Reference Guide is located at http://www.dol.gov/esa/whd/regs/compliance/hrg.htm. The federal minimum wage rate will increase again on July 24, 2009, to $7.25 per hour. For more information, call the U.S. Department of Labor's (USDOL) toll-free help line at 866-4US-Wage (487-9243).

Missouri employers subject to the provisions of Missouri's Minimum Wage Law should take note that Missouri's minimum wage rate is higher than the federal rate and that covered employers are required to pay covered employees at least $6.65 per hour. Information on Missouri's Minimum Wage Law can be accessed at the Missouri Department of Labor and Industrial Relations' web site, http://www.dolir.mo.gov/LS/minimumwage/index.asp. Missourians also can contact the Department's Division of Labor Standards at 573-751-3403 or e-mail questions to minimumwage@dolir.mo.gov.

On Sept. 30, the Missouri Department of Labor and Industrial Relations will measure the increase or decrease in the Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W) as published by the USDOL from July 2007 to July 2008 as prescribed by state law. Based on changes in the CPI-W, Missouri's minimum wage rate will increase or decrease. The new rate will take effect Jan. 1, 2009.

The USDOL publishes the CPI-W each month, which can be found at http://www.bls.gov/cpi/home.htm. Employers may use this information to make reasonable projections based on earlier changes in the CPI-W.

If at any time the federal minimum wage rate exceeds the Missouri minimum wage rate in effect at the same time, the federal rate will be adopted as Missouri's minimum wage rate and future CPI-W adjustments will be based on the rate that is in effect on Sept. 30 of that year.

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