The Washington State Department of Labor & Industries announced an increase in the State minimum wage for 2023.

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Effective January 1st the minimum wage will be $15.74 per hour, an increase of $1.25 from 2022's wage.  The minimum wage applies to workers 16 and older.  Workers that are 14 and 15 years old can be paid 85% or $13.38 per hour.

Initiative 688, passed in 1998, set the State minimum wage in accordance with cost of living increases based on the federal Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers.  That was in effect from 2001 through 2016.

In 2016 voters passed Initiative 1422 which increased the State minimum wage to set amounts.  Those amounts were $11.00 in 2017, $11.50 in 2018, $12.00 in 2019, and $13.50 in 2020.

In September of 2020 the State minimum wage calculation returned to cost of living increases based on the federal Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers.

Washington State currently has the third highest minimum wage in the nation behind Washington DC at $15.20 and California at $15.00.  The increase to $15.74 per hour will give Washington State the highest State Minimum wage in the Country.

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