Montanans earning the minimum wage will see the rate increase to $8.65 per hour beginning January 1, 2020.
The 2019 minimum wage in Montana is $8.50 per hour. Currently, 29 states and D.C. have minimum wages above the federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour.
A press release from the Governor's office said that an estimated 10,200 Montana workers, or 2.2 percent of the workforce, currently receive hourly wages less than $8.65 per hour, and are likely to receive higher wages due to the 2020 minimum wage increase.
In 2018, the industry with the largest number of workers earning minimum wage was the accommodations and food services industry followed by the retail trade industry.
The minimum wage is determined by taking the current minimum wage of $8.50 and increasing it by the Consumer Price Index for all Urban consumers increase from August of 2018 to August 2019. The CPI-U increased by 1.75 percent over the year ending August 2019. To keep the minimum wage at the same purchasing power as the prior year, the wage should increase by $0.148 per hour. The resulting wage is $8.648 and statute specifies that the wage must be rounded to the nearest five cents.
Montana Code Annotated 39-3-409 requires the Montana Department of Labor and Industry to adjust the Montana minimum wage for inflation using the CPI-U.
The minimum wage will increase in 25 other states and the District of Columbia in 2020, according to a report released by Wolters Kluwer Legal and Regulatory U.S.
The highest minimum wage employees in the country will remain in Seattle, with workers making a minimum of $16 an hour at large employers, and $15 an hour at small employers. The state of Washington will offer the highest statewide minimum wage at $13.50 an hour. In New York City, the minimum wage will go to $15 an hour for all employers next week. Employees at New York City's three main airports will clock in a minimum wage of $15.60 an hour. The minimum wage in California will see a $1 increase to $13 an hour on January 1.
While a majority of states will see an increase to minimum wage, many will not. In Georgia and Wyoming, the states will continue to have the lowest statewide minimum wage at $5.15 an hour, although most workers will be subjected to the higher federal standard minimum wage of $7.25 an hour.