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Graph depicting upward trend (Photo: hyejin kang/Essentials Collection/Getty Images)

The minimum wage rose as of Jan. 1 in many states, cities and counties. (Photo: hyejin kang/Essentials Collection/Getty Images)

Landscape contractors in 21 states and 26 counties and cities will see the hourly wage that they must pay their workers rise as of Jan. 1 of this year. In addition, four states and 23 local governments will increase their minimum wages sometime in 2020 after Jan. 1.

With federal efforts to raise the minimum wage nationally stalled in Congress, states and local governments are taking matters into their own hands. The federal minimum wage has been at $7.25 per hour since July 24, 2009.

A bill raising the federal minimum wage gradually to $15 per hour by 2025 passed the U.S. House of Representatives in July of 2019, but is not expected to move in the Republican-controlled Senate.

Two payroll issues in 2020

In addition to paying attention to the new federal overtime rules that were effective on Jan. 1 (see Landscape Management Nov. 5, 2019), landscape contractors must also pay attention to whether their states and/or local governments are raising minimum wage rates.

Below, Table 1 shows the 21 states which raised their minimum wages as of Jan. 1.

Table 1. States raising their minimum wages as of Jan. 1

State New Minimum Wage (% Increase) State New Minimum Wage (% Increase)
Alaska  $10.19 (3%) Minnesota2  $10 (1.4%)
Arizona  $12 (9.1%) Missouri  $9.45 (9.9%)
Arkansas  $10 (8.1%) Montana  $8.65 (1.8%)
California  $13 (8.3%) New Jersey  $11 (10%)
Colorado  $12 (8.1%) New Mexico  $9 (20%)
Florida  $8.56 (1.2%) New York3  $11.80 (6.3%)
Illinois1  $9.25 (12%) Ohio  $8.70 (1.8%)
Maine  $12 (9.1%) South Dakota  $9.30 (2.2%)
Maryland  $11 (8.9%) Vermont  $10.96 (1.7%)
Massachusetts  $12.75 (6.3%) Washington  $13.50 (12.5%)
Michigan  $9.65 (2.1%)
1 Illinois will raise its minimum wage again on July 1, 2020 (Table 2).
2 Minnesota minimum wage is $8.25 for small employers (annual gross revenue under $500,000). The wage shown is for large employers.
3 New York state’s new minimum wage went into effect on Dec. 31, 2019.

Those states (and Washington, D.C.) that will be raising their minimum wages during 2020 after Jan, 1 are listed in the Table 2.

Table 2. States and Washington, D.C., raising their minimum wages in 2020 after Jan. 1

State New Minimum Wage (% Increase) Date Minimum Wage Increases
Connecticut $12 (9.1%) September 1
Illinois $10.00 (8.1%) July 1
Nevada4 $9 (9.1% ) July 1
Oregon $12 (6.7%) July 1
Washington, D.C. $15 ($7.1) July 1
4 Nevada has two levels of minimum wages. For those employees without employer health insurance coverage, the minimum wage will rise to $9 on July 1. For employees receiving employer health care coverage, the minimum wage will rise to $8.

Twenty-six counties and cities have already raised their minimum wages as of Jan. 1, and 23 more will raise their minimum wages later in 2020. The list is too complex to be shown here. To see a comprehensive list of the local governments raising their minimum wages, click here.

This article is tagged with , and posted in Blog

About the Author:

Gregg Robertson, Landscape Management's government relations blogger, is a government relations consultant for the Pennsylvania Landscape & Nursery Association (PLNA) and president of Conewago Ventures. From 2002 until May 2013 he served as president of PLNA. Reach him at

1 Comment on "Minimum wage rose in 21 states, 26 counties and cities Jan. 1"

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  1. Austin says:

    Thank you for sharing the information in this article! It’s difficult to get the truth with all the rumors and false information spread. This was clear, concise and much appreciated!