Minnesota minimum wage increase signed into law

by Kia Farhang

Gov. Mark Dayton signed into law Monday a bill raising the state minimum hourly wage for large businesses to $9.50 by 2016.

The increase is the first of its kind for Minnesota in a decade. The Star Tribune reports Minnesota’s current $6.15 minimum wage places it among only three other states that fall under the federal minimum of $7.25.

The raise will pour an additional $472 million into about 325,000 Minnesotan workers’ pockets, according to a fact sheet from the governor’s office.

The minimum wage will index with inflation starting in 2018, which will cause it to rise with the cost of living.

Two Republican legislators running against Dayton in the November election vehemently opposed the increase, the Pioneer Press reported.

"The fact that he is still focusing on hourly wage jobs and has done absolutely nothing to bring in careers to our state proves that he's out of touch," Rep. Kurt Zellers, R-Maple Grove, told the Pioneer Press.