The federal minimum wage was last increased in 2009 from $6.55 to $7.25. That move raised New Jersey’s minimum wage by a dime an hour, as it had been $7.15.
However, considering the high cost of living here, $7.25 just doesn’t buy a New Jersey worker as much home, as much food or as much of anything else as it does in most other states.
Democratic leaders in the state Legislature are talking about raising New Jersey’s minimum wage above the federal standard again, as it has been at times in the past. It should happen. Their plan would lift it to $8.50.
As it becomes the latest major New Jersey newspaper to editorialize in favor of raising the state’s minimum wage, the Courier-Post cites a recent op-ed by NJPP’s Deborah Howlett, in which she notes that neighboring states like New York and Connecticut are also considering wage increases — poking holes in the argument that raising the minimum wage will make New Jersey less competitive.
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