Let’s see if we can’t wrap up this review and get to the meat and potatoes of our look here at the federal minimum wage bill under review and at how it will affect, or not affect, each and every state minimum wage out there. It’s the meat and potatoes you come here for, I know. I just wanted to pass along a little bit of cheat sheet to give an overview of all of the changes to state minimum wage laws in the last couple years.
And look at that! We only have three more states to consider for our cheat sheet. The first of the last is the Keystone State. Pennsylvania has recently seen its own minimum wage increase. According to the Pennsylvania minimum wage law on the books currently, the PA minimum wage increased to $6.15 as of January 1, 2007. And employers, don’t get too used to it. Come July 1 of this year, the Pennsylvania minimum wage will go up again, this time to $7.15 per hour.
Rhode Island is already above the seven dollar level, thanks to its minimum wage law. The Rhode Island minimum wage had been $7.10 as of March 1, 2006. And now after January 1, 2007, the Rhode Island minimum wage went up to $7.40 per hour.
The last state on our cheat sheet of minimum wage laws is West Virginia. The state that once broke away from the rest of Virginia over slavery will soon have its own new minimum wage. West Virginia is breaking away from the pack with its own rate come July 1, 2007. Then, the West Virginia minimum wage will go upto $6.55 per hour. And according to the West Virginia minimum wage law, the rate will increase again on July 1, 2008, to $7.25 per hour.
Like the other states, employers in West Virginia need to post the Virginia posters in their workplaces. The information on these posters is meant as a resource for the employees, but can also be quite useful for the employers as well. First of all, employees can use the information found on the posters to help them learn about and understand their rights and responsibilities in the workplace as outlined by state and federal laws. Secondly, the laws on the posters often have information about the protocol for the complaint process as well as which state and federal agencies are set up to help when problems arise. Employers can also benefit from having this information handy as well. They can refer to the posters to make sure that their company policies and practices uphold the laws that apply to them and they can also use the posters as quick references if they ever have specific questions about the laws such as who is able to receive workers’ compensation.
The West Virginia posters need to have specific state and federal laws on them. The state laws are those with information about workers’ compensation, unemployment insurance, wage and payment collection, discrimination and minimum wage. The federal laws that need to be a part of the West Virginia posters are USERRA – Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act, Equal Employment Opportunity is the Law, Federal Minimum Wage, Employee Polygraph Protection Act, Family and Medical Leave Act and OSHA – Job Safety and Health Protection.
It is the employer’s responsibility to make sure they have the most current West Virginia posters posted in their workplace. This means that they may need to update their posters as often as once a year because laws do sometimes change that frequently. Furthermore, employers also need to make sure the posters are in a visible location within an area where all employees have access such as a break room or mail room.