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The Florida minimum wage increased to $7.31 per hour, effective today, June 1, 2011. Florida law requires the Agency for Workforce Innovation to calculate an adjusted minimum wage rate each year. The annual calculation is based on the percentage change in the federal Consumer Price Index for urban wage earners and clerical workers in the South Region for the 12-month period prior to September 1, 2010.
On November 2, 2004, Florida voters approved a constitutional amendment which created Florida’s minimum wage. The minimum wage applies to all employees in the state who are covered by the federal minimum wage.
Employers must pay their employees the hourly state minimum wage for all hours worked in Florida. The definitions of “employer”, “employee”, and “wage” for state purposes are the same as those established under the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). Employers of “tipped employees” who meet eligibility requirements for the tip credit under the FLSA, may count tips actually received as wages under the Florida minimum wage. However, the employer must pay “tipped employees” a direct wage. The direct wage is calculated as equal to the minimum wage ($7.31) minus the 2003 tip credit ($3.02), or a direct hourly wage of $4.29 as of June 1, 2011.
Go to the Palm Beach Post’s website or the State of Florida’s Agency for Workforce Innovation to read more about the increase.
The Miami Herald reports that Miami-Dade “[c]ounty overwhelmingly passed a new ordinance to combat wage theft, making it easier for workers to bring legal action against employers who fail to pay them.
Thursday’s vote comes after more than a year of work by a non-governmental task force of labor and immigrant advocates in Miami. San Francisco has a similar ordinance. Los Angeles and New Orleans are considering them.”
In addition to recovering the unpaid wages that have been wrongly denied them, workers can recover 2 times that amount in additional damages. The ordinance will result in a a low-cost administrative process that seeks to speed along claims for workers who have not been properly paid their wages.