Minimum Wage Increase Scheduled for Jan. 1

HR & Safety

Connecticut’s hourly minimum wage will increase 4.6% to $15.69 from Jan. 1, 2024.

A state law enacted in 2019 implemented five annual increases in the hourly wage and tied future yearly increases to the U.S. Department of Labor’s Employment Cost Index.

The last of those five statutory increases took effect June 1, when the hourly wage hit $15.

Based on the law, future increases are calculated based on the change in the ECI “over the 12-month period ending June 30 of the preceding year, rounded to the nearest whole cent.”

Connecticut is the only state to index the minimum wage to the ECI, although other states tie increases to to other national economic indicators. 

‘High-Wage State’

State officials estimate 10% of Connecticut’s workforce—about 169,000 workers—earn the minimum wage.

Connecticut average wages rose 4.4% from 2021 to 2022, giving the state the fifth-highest average wage in the country.

“We’re a high-wage state, so I think that increase in minimum wages is probably not a huge issue right now in this environment,” CBIA’s Chris DiPentima told the Connecticut Mirror.

DiPentima added that employers still believe wages should be set by market forces, not by government.

Bank of America, for instance, announced this week it will increase minimum hourly pay to $23 next month as it moves toward a $25 goal by 2025.

And Amazon announced plans to hire 250,000 workers this holiday season, including full-time, part-time, and seasonal workers at an average hourly rate of $20.50.

National Picture

Connecticut’s minimum wage is currently tied with Massachusetts for third highest in the country after Washington ($15.74) and California ($15.50).

Twenty states are tied for the lowest hourly wage, $7.25, which is the federal minimum wage for covered nonexempt employees.

Connecticut employers are legally obligated to pay employees the updated hourly wage on and after Jan. 1, 2024, which falls on a Monday.

Connecticut’s minimum wage is currently tied with Massachusetts for third highest in the country.

This means employers can choose to pay employees $15 for every hour leading up to Jan. 1, but must adjust payroll from that date.

Connecticut law includes a $6.38 minimum wage for tipped workers, which includes restaurant waiters, and the $8.23 minimum for bartenders. However, the employee must make at least $15 per hour including tips.

It also includes a 90-day, $10.10 hourly training wage for 16- and 17-year-old workers.


2 thoughts on “Minimum Wage Increase Scheduled for Jan. 1”

  1. Mark Polinsky says:

    I think Connecticut’s approach to minimum wage does not properly take into account the other benefits that workers receive as part of their employment. For example, in our business an entry-level full-time associate being paid $15 per hour has another $5 – $11 of benefits paid by the company on their behalf for medical, 401K match, company paid life insurance, company paid short-term disability, Social Security, Medicare, and Unemployment. The state mandated continued increases in the cost of labor proliferate through the state with every business and company having to raise their prices or when not possible, reduce profitability, since we compete in a global marketplace. The profits that were traditionally invested back into the company in equipment, training and technology shrink at a rate dictated by the state instead of the global economy. The desire by the state government to be considered a high wage state does not attract businesses or provide an incentive for people to move to or remain in the state for retirement.

  2. Shirleyann D. says:

    I agree with all you say. They attempt to bring the bottom up with wage increases, but don’t care about the consequences they are incurring. People will lose their jobs or businesses will close, and automation will replace them. It adds to the taxes on truckers, businesses and people in general. Hence, why retirees can’t live here. But maybe the state of CT does not want retirees? Most are not rich. Therefore, not much to tax on.
    CT wouldn’t need to offer so many welfare benefits if they made it affordable to live here. Sky rocketing rents and house prices are killing the everyday person, but continuous wage increases don’t help. They just raise the prices because they figure they got more money, and they can afford it.
    I wish we had a Republican in office who will clear out the double, triple taxation for things like gas, parks and transportation. That is what everyone really needs. Have you registered your vehicles the past few years? Do you see how many times you pay the park fee? One time per vehicle. So, if you have two, you paid the same tax twice. Also, the other fees added that have nothing to do with owning a vehicle. This is a slippery state to live in.

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