Maryland Minimum Wage Bill Summary

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Raise Maryland, Mar 4 2011

Background

Maryland’s minimum wage is currently just $7.25 per hour, or roughly $15,000 per year for a full-time worker.

For tipped workers, like waitresses, carwash attendants and nail salon workers, the minimum wage is even lower – just 50 percent of the full minimum wage, or $3.63 per hour.  

Seventeen states – and the neighboring District of Columbia – have minimum wages that are higher than $7.25 per hour.

If the minimum wage had kept pace with inflation over the last 40 years, it would be about $10 today.

What the bill will do

It will raise Maryland’s minimum wage to $9.75 per hour by 2013 in the following three steps:

  • July 1, 2011 -- $8.25 per hour, matching the District of Columbia’s current rate
  • July 1, 2012 -- $9.00 per hour
  • July 1, 2013 -- $9.75 per hour

Starting in 2014, it will “index” Maryland’s minimum wage so that it keeps pace with the rising cost of living. Ten states have adopted this best practice in recent years, which ensures that the minimum wage does not fall in real value each year.

It will raise the minimum wage for tipped workers from 50 percent of the minimum wage to 75 percent.  Many states have tipped worker minimum wages that are higher than Maryland’s, including seven states that require tipped workers to be paid 100 percent of the minimum wage.

Whom it will benefit

By conservative estimates, it will raise pay for more than 300,000 working Marylanders.

Based on estimates by the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, it will inject approximately $1 billion in new consumer spending into Maryland’s economy, as working Marylanders spend the higher wages on necessities at local businesses.