2009 Florida Minimum Wage Increase

According to the Florida Agency for Workforce Innovation, employers are required to display state and federal minimum wage posters that are both accurate and up to date, preferably in both English and Spanish.


The Florida minimum wage increased on January 1, 2009 to $7.21 an hour. That is a hike of 42 cents hourly from the 2008 rate of $6.79.


Employers and employees in Florida will also see a federal minimum wage increase in mid-year. On July 24, 2009, the federal minimum wage will increase to $7.25 an hour.


Florida was experiencing a seemingly endless economic upturn in 2004. On November 2 of that year, the voters of Florida approved an amendment to the state constitution creating a state minimum wage.


According to law, workers must receive whichever rate, the state or the federal, offers the greater benefit. Until July 24, 2009, that will be the Florida minimum wage. However, after the federal minimum wage increase, workers in Florida will be entitled to the higher, federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour. At that time, the federal minimum wage will be 4 cents higher than the Florida minimum wage and consequently most Florida employers must abide by the federal minimum wage at that time.


According to the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics, the Consumer Price Index (CPI) went up 6.2% in the 12-month period ending August 31, 2008. According to the new Florida law, the minimum wage must go up according to the CPI for urban wage earners and clerical workers of the South Region in the corresponding 12-month period.


Because of the significant CPI increase in the South Region, the hike of 42 cents per hour is high even by the standards of other states that link minimum wage to cost of living. Colorado’s rate, for example, increased just 3.7% for 2009, resulting in a hike in the minimum wage from $7.02 to $7.28. Another way of looking at this difference is that employers in Florida are seeing an increase that is 162% of the increase in Colorado.


Tipped employees in Florida began receiving $4.19 an hour on January 1, 2009, compared to $3.77 an hour in 2008. The federal minimum wage for tipped employees is still $2.13 hourly.

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