Friday, May 25, 2018
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Ohio minimum wage to rise a bit

For full-time workers, it’s worth about $200 a year


Protestor Juan Navarro demonstrates in front of the counter at a McDonald's restaurant on Dec. 5 in Los Angeles. Demonstrations were planned nation-wide as a part of push by labor unions, worker advocacy groups and Democrats to raise the federal minimum wage of $7.25 to $15.


Ten cents an hour.

That’s the raise most of Ohio’s minimum-wage workers will get Wednesday.

The minimum wage for nontipped employees will rise from $7.85 an hour to $7.95 an hour.

Tipped employees will see their base pay rise from $3.93 an hour to $3.98 an hour.

Approximately 330,000 Ohio workers will be affected, according to Policy Matters Ohio. The increase will raise consumer spending and boost economic growth by $38 million, according to an analysis of Census data by the nonpartisan Economic Policy Institute.

“Ohio workers and the Ohio economy will both benefit from this raise for our lowest-paid neighbors,” said Amy Hanauer, executive director of Policy Matters Ohio. “The employees who benefit will turn around and spend money in our communities, stimulating growth here.”

Ohio’s minimum wage rises each year by the rate of inflation. The government Consumer Price Index for urban wage earners and clerical workers rose 1.5 percent from Sept. 1, 2012, to Aug. 31, 2013.

For a nontipped employee who works 40 hours a week, the raise means pay of $318 a week instead of $314 a week. The rate translates to $16,536 a year for somebody who works 40 hours a week for 52 weeks. That’s $208 more than this year.

Tipped employees are those who regularly receive more than $30 a month in tips. Employers must be able to prove that tipped employees receive at least the minimum wage when wages and tips are combined.

Not all minimum-wage employees will get a raise. The minimum wage for employees at smaller companies — those with annual gross receipts of $288,000 or less in 2013 — and for 14-year-olds and 15-year-olds is $7.25 per hour, which is the federal minimum wage.

The federal minimum wage for tipped workers is $2.13 and has not changed since 1991.

There are other exceptions to Ohio’s minimum wage law. Among them are baby-sitters in the employer’s home, live-in employees, salesmen who receive commissions, some camp workers, and employees of family-owned and operated businesses who are family members of an owner.

Ohio is one of 13 states that will raise their minimum wage on New Year’s Day. In Michigan, the minimum wage will remain at $7.40 an hour. It has not changed since 2008. Tipped employees in Michigan can be paid $2.65 an hour if their wages and tips combined equal at least $7.40 an hour.

A minimum wage increase can have a domino effect, as employees making slightly more than the minimum get small raises to keep them above the base rate.

Employees who think an employer is not following the law should visit the Web site of the Ohio Department of Commerce’s division of industrial compliance (​dico) or call 614-644-2223.

Contact Chip Towns at: or 419-724-6194.

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