Ohio is among eight states where minimum-wage workers will see an increase in their pay beginning Sunday.
The minimum wage will increase 30 cents an hour to $7.70, thanks to a 2006 state constitutional amendment that ties increases to the rate of inflation.
Bill Burga, president of the Ohio AFL-CIO, a labor umbrella group and part of the coalition that pushed for the 2006 amendment, said in a prepared statement, “If you are only making the minimum wage, you are essentially just surviving.”
Burga said the increase “will slow down the race to the bottom. ... These modest increases can generate revenue for our local economies — something we are in desperate need of here in Ohio.”
Policy Matters Ohio, a research group headquartered in Cleveland, said about 347,000 workers will see an increase in their wages, including 291,000 workers who are directly affected.
The seven other states where the minimum wage will increase are Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Montana, Oregon, Vermont and Washington.
The increases range from 28 cent to 37 cents an hour, according to the National Employment Law Project (NELP), an employment advocacy group.
Minimum wage earners in Washington will see the biggest increase — by 37 cents — taking their hourly pay to $9.04.
The Ohio minimum wage for employees who receive tips will increase 15 cents an hour to $3.85.
Ohio employers with annual gross receipts of $283,000 or more must pay the Ohio minimum wage.
Employers with annual revenue of less than $283,000 must pay at least the federal minimum wage of $7.25 an hour. The federal minimum wage has been at that level since 2009.
While minimum wages in some states have risen in the last several years, they, along with the federal minimum wage, have not kept up with the cost of living.
The federal minimum of $7.25 an hour would need to be $10.38 today to have the same spending power it had in 1968, NELP said.
Ohio and 17 other states, along with the District of Columbia, have minimum rates above the federal level.
Some local communities also set their own minimum wage. The highest of these is San Francisco’s $10.24 an hour, beginning Jan. 1.
Here are other state minimum wages that are increasing, according to NELP:
Arizona, to $7.65; Colorado, $7.64; Florida, $7.67; Montana, $7.65; Oregon, $8.80; and Vermont, $8.46.
Nevada determines whether to raise its rate in July. In October, Missouri said the state’s minimum wage for 2012 would remain at $7.25, the same as the federal rate.
Beacon Journal wire services contributed to this report.
Katie Byard can be reached at 330-996-3781 or firstname.lastname@example.org.