Will the Georgia Minimum Wage Increase?
There are no current plans to raise Georgia’s minimum rate, so the state’s federally mandated rate of $7.25 will continue to apply. However, keep in mind that cities and counties may have their own wage rates.
Proponents of raising the minimum wage estimate that a larger number of families would move out of poverty. The bill also includes a provision that will automatically index the rate to inflation each year.
Payroll & Scheduling
Whether or not Georgia minimum wage rates increase, the fact is that compliance with labor laws is key for any business owner. An all-in-one payroll and team management solution can help ensure that you always pay workers the minimum wage, and stay up to date on any other rules and regulations that may change.
The current state minimum wage is $7.25 an hour for most employees, and tipped workers must be paid at least $3.85. However, full-time high school and college students can be paid up to 85% of the state minimum wage (as little as $6.16 per hour) when working on a work-study program or through other exempt occupations.
McClain has tried to bring a minimum wage bill to the floor of the Georgia General Assembly at least five times since becoming a lawmaker, but so far he has failed to garner enough support. Stacey Evans, a Democratic state representative, has also filed a bill that would allow local governments to set their own minimum wages.
With state and city minimum wage rates changing each year, it’s challenging for HR leaders to keep up. This tool makes it easy to track changes by state and city so you can stay on top of your labor laws.
Ashley Buzzy, owner of a gift shop in Atlanta’s Summerhill neighborhood, says she stays in business because she pays her employees a living wage. She says she’s not happy that the state is considering raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour.
Some states have higher minimum wage rates than the federal rate, including Alaska, Florida, Maine, Minnesota, Montana, New Jersey, and Ohio. Additionally, some workers are exempt from the minimum wage laws, such as certain students and agricultural employees. It’s also important to know that employers who pay workers less than the minimum wage may be subject to civil penalties and back wages. Order your Georgia labor law posters today to ensure compliance.
Payroll & Taxes
While Georgia currently has one of the lowest minimum wages in the country, most workers in the state are subject to federal wage and hour laws set by the Fair Labor Standards Act. Generally speaking, most small businesses must pay their employees at least the minimum wage, though farmers, students and certain other small business owners may be able to pay less.
In addition, tipped workers must be paid the minimum wage plus any tips they receive, while employers must post all wage and hour information in their workplace. Workers who are not compensated at the required rate may file a private lawsuit against their employer to recover back wages, liquidated damages and attorney’s fees.
Restaurant profit margins are tighter than other industries, making it challenging for restaurants to afford a $15 minimum wage increase. But with the right technology, you can help your workers succeed and keep your business in compliance with state and federal guidelines.
Payroll & Compliance
Payroll compliance is the legal obligation that businesses have to adhere to local, state and federal regulations surrounding employee compensation. These include minimum wage, overtime, recordkeeping and child labor standards. Keeping up with these requirements becomes even more complicated when you have employees in multiple locations, as different regions may have different laws that employers must follow.
Restaurants have much lower profit margins than other industries, so they’re often a lot more dependent on the minimum wage workforce. That’s why Democratic state Rep. Beka Natsvlishvili is preparing a bill that would allow local governments to set their own minimum wages.
UC Berkeley’s Labor Center estimates that raising the national minimum wage to $15 per hour would help families afford housing, put food on the table and manage the rising costs of essential services like childcare. It also helps close the income gap between women and men, and makes it easier for families to pay for health care.