Cities with the Highest Minimum Wage

Efforts to establish a uniform minimal wage across all states started back in 1933 when the National Industrial Recovery Act established 25 cents per hour as the minimal wage. Since then, the federal government has mandated a national minimum wage of $2.75 per hour. There are 29 states in America that have a minimum wage that is higher than that set by the federal state. These increments have been made possible by awareness campaigns that were largely successful and drew large support from the nation’s high profile activists. The increase in minimum wages allows for self-sufficient workers with an ability to stand by themselves in case of anything. On 26th March 2014, Connecticut was the first city to comply with President Obama’s call to increase the minimum wage. Los Angeles became the first state to raise its minimum wage to $15 an hour. In this article, we feature the cities that have the highest minimum wage an hour

1. San Francisco, CaliforniaSan Francisco photo

As of May 1, 2015, this city’s minimum wage stands at $13 per hour. The Golden city’s vision is to raise its minimum wage to $18 by 2018. Their most immediate increase is scheduled for July 1, 2016. From then on, the residents can expect a $1 raise every year till the minimum wage is at $ 15 an hour by July 1, 2018. After that, the city’s minimum wage will start to rise based on the City’s Consumer Price Index. The city government of this city is widely known for going with the will of the people, and so we expect the minimum wage law to be fully implemented as it was voted for.  It seems that California should be a really popular place to work, to judge by the statistics.

2. Oakland, California

As of 2nd March 2015, Oakland‘s wage of $12.25 an hour was the second highest recorded in the country. About 82% of the eligible voters approved the minimal wage which also caters for sick days for about 37% of the private sector that previously wasn’t paid for sick days. Better still, the Oakland minimum wage rate is tied to the cost of living, so it continues to increase on every New Year in sync with inflation. This increase gives a new and fresh view to the city that is known for high poverty rates. There are still, however, jobs online in the city that pay wages of $10.00 per hour that have caused public uproar that the government is not doing enough just yet to enforce the minimum wage law. Still, if you are looking for a city located on the west coast of the famous California with a beautiful skyline and a good minimum wage to go with it, welcome to Oakland.


3. Seattle, Washington

Washington as a state boasts a higher minimum per hour rate of $9.47 as compared to California at $9.00 per hour. Several cities in Washington, however, have scheduled wage increases below those of Californian cities. Seattle is one of the cities in Washington with a high minimum wage rate that stands at $11.00 per hour. The sitting mayor has plans for the city, as he aims to make the city’s minimum wage an average of $15.00 per hour by January 2017 and $18.13 per hour by 2025 to give the famous city in the nation’s capital the third highest minimum wage.

Seattle photo

4. Berkeley, California

Berkeley is the third of California’s cities make it to the list of cities with minimum wages. On top of having an interesting history and various geographical features that catch the eye, Oakley is quite a promising town in terms of minimum wage rate per hour.  Since 2014, the city’s minimum wage has been at $10.00 per hour, and this rose to$11.00 to match Seattle’s minimum wage rate. This attractive minimum wage rate is entitled to any worker who puts in, at least, two hours per week for an employer within the geographic parameters of the city of Berkeley.

Berkeley photo

Photo by Franco Folini


5. Santa Fe, New Mexico

Next, we are officially in the Land of Enchantment that is New Mexico. The beautiful city of Santa Fe is not only this state’s capital but it also boasts a minimum wage of $10.84 per hour, currently the fifth highest in the land. The general requirement is that all employers in Santa Fe should pay their workers a minimum of $10.84 per hour, including part-time and temporary workers. This imposition became active as of March 1, 2015.

The fight for minimum wages to become more than the federal minimum wage started long ago but these changes only started to become effective post-2010. We can only hope that many more cities will follow in the footsteps of these cities that are already making a mark in world history by paying the employees exceptionally well.