An amended bill that would increase the federal minimum wage to $15 an hour over several years for most workers was passed July 18 by the House.
The measure now goes to the Senate for consideration.
Under the Raise the Wage Act (H.R. 582), the Fair Labor Standards Act would be updated to raise the federal hourly minimum wage in several annual increments to $15 by 2025. The minimum wage rose to $7.25 from $5.15 in July 2009.
The first increase would be to $8.44, followed by annual increases to $9.50, $10.60, $11.70, $12.80, $13.90, and finally to $15 on Oct. 1, 2025. The minimum wage would be adjusted for inflation in subsequent years. Before the bill was amended, it would have increase the hourly minimum wage to $15 by 2024.
Additionally, newly hired workers younger than 20 would be paid $5.50 an hour, up from $4.25; tipped workers would receive a cash wage of $3.60 an hour, up from $2.13; and workers with disabilities would be paid $4.25. These subminimum amounts would increase over time before they are eliminated and replaced by the full federal hourly minimum wage.
A report by the Government Accountability Office on the economic and employment effects of the minimum-wage increases provided for in the bill would have to be submitted to Congress before the minimum wage could rise to $11.