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Minimum Wage: 6 Facts About Oregon's Minimum Wage

By    |   Thursday, 04 Feb 2016 05:12 PM

At $9.25 per hour, Oregon had the third-highest minimum wage in the nation in 2015, only trailing Washington State and the District of Columbia.

At the start of 2016, however, six more states surpassed Oregon to pay a higher minimum wage, which then ranked it ninth-highest in the nation. Oregon was projected to hold that spot for next two years, according to the National Employment Law Project.

Read on to learn five other key facts about the state’s minimum wage law.

1. This minimum wage will increase annually based on the Consumer Price Index, which is calculated by U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. This index measures the relative cost of goods and services based on annual inflation. Oregon began using the CPI metric in 2004, according to the U.S. Department of Labor.

In 2015, the minimum wage rate increased by 15 cents to adapt to these rising prices, which was calculated by Oregon's Bureau of Labor and Industries. The wage amount established by the CPI is rounded to the nearest five cents.

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The higher minimum was expected to result in an estimated $234 annual increase for those making an entry-level wage and working 30 hours per week, and to generate an estimated $25 million in additional consumer spending for Oregon’s economy.

Oregon's minimum wage rate of $9.25 remained flat for 2016 based on CPI "market prices."

2. Premium overtime pay, according to the DOL, is "required after 10 hours a day in nonfarm canneries, driers, or packing plants and in mills, factories or manufacturing establishments (excluding sawmills, planning mills, shingle mills, and logging camps)."

Hours worked beyond 40 in a week are also awarded overtime pay.

3. According to the Oregon Employment Department, the state's minimum wage earners take home about half of what the median earner makes there.

4. Oregon's minimum wage stretches a littler further than most states, according to the Oregon Employment Department. 

"The purchasing power of Oregon’s minimum wage today is similar to the purchasing power of the minimum wage in the late-1970s, while nationally the minimum wage has lost purchasing power," the agency said.

5. Many minimum wage employees report being unable to survive without subsidies.

According to calculations from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the rate of $9.25 an hour only constitutes a living wage in Oregon for two working adults with no other household members.

A living wage is defined as the minimum amount needed to afford essentials such as housing, medical insurance/care, child care, food, utilities, and transportation.

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At $9.25 per hour, Oregon had the third-highest minimum wage in the nation in 2015; the state trailed only Washington State and the District of Columbia. Read on to learn five other key facts about the state’s minimum wage law.
minimum wage, oregon, facts
Thursday, 04 Feb 2016 05:12 PM
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