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Dec. 13, 1999

Minimum wage increases to $6.50 per hour Jan. 1

TUMWATER - Workers in Washington state will receive a minimum wage increase Jan. 1, 2000, to $6.50 per hour.

The increase was the result of an initiative approved by the voters in 1998.

The initiative applies to workers 18 and older. Sixteen- and 17-year-olds also will receive the raise under a rule that stipulates they earn the same minimum wage as adults (Washington Administrative Code 296-125-043). Workers under 16 can receive no less than 85 percent of the new adult minimum wage ($5.53) and also may come under the federal minimum wage guidelines.

The 1998 initiative also authorized the Department of Labor & Industries to adjust the minimum wage by the rate of inflation every year beginning in 2001.

A poster with the minimum wage requirements is available from any L&I service location.

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