There has been lots of talk recently about the potential for a minimum wage hike – up to $15 per hour – in New Jersey. Here’s the basics of what you need to know:

Are there plans to change the minimum wage?

New Jersey’s state minimum wage is reevaluated each year and is based on the values of the Consumer Price Index (CPI), which is intended to raise the rate along with inflation.

In June of 2016, the New Jersey Senate passed a bill that would gradually increase the state’s minimum wage to $15 per hour by 2021. That bill was later vetoed by then-Governor Chris Christie, who posited that the rate hike would ultimately have a negative impact on laborers.

The state minimum wage debate was reopened in the fall of 2017, when current Governor Phil Murphy ran for office on a campaign to increase the state minimum wage to $15 per hour, arguing that the increase is one of the state’s highest priorities.

What has happened in 2018?

In January 2018, the state’s minimum wage increased from $8.44 to $8.60 per hour. The state has continued to debate the $15 minimum wage. 

What’s happening in 2019 and beyond?

While details surrounding an increase have not been confirmed, Governor Phil Murphy has communicated an intention to gradually raise the minimum wage to $15 per hour over the course of a few years. For now, the minimum wage is slated to increase to $8.85 per hour on January 1, 2019.

If you have any questions about the minimum wage in New Jersey, or how the proposed increase to $15 per hour may affect you or your business, contact us today to schedule a consultation.