Missouri’s minimum wage will increase on Jan. 1 to $7.50 an hour -- 25 cents higher than the federal minimum wage of $7.25 an hour.
Missouri’s minimum wage is increasing by 15 cents an hour, compared to 2012, because of an escalator clause in the 2006 state law – overwhelmingly approved by voters – that allowed for separate increases in the state’s wage law, rather than linking it to the federal wage.
For tipped employees, the new minimum wage is going up 12 cents, to $3.75 an hour.
An analysis of census data by the nonpartisan Economic Policy Institute estimated that the state’s increase will benefit about 104,000 Missouri workers.
Missouri is among 12 states that will increase their minimum wage on Jan. 1. Also as of New Year’s Day, 21 states will have minimum wages above the national level. The federal minimum wage can be increased only by legislation. The last federal hike was approved by Congress in 2007.
Groups backing Missouri’s hike, including most unions and the regional advocacy group Jobs With Justice, say that even with the increase, the minimum wage is still below what would be a living wage.
Opponents of the hike. which include some business groups, say it hurts job growth and puts Missouri at a disadvantage with neighboring states that have a lower minimum wage.