Minimum wage hike will positively impact Arizona businesses

Dec 26, 2023, 1:00 PM

Arizona's $14.35 minimum wage will be one of the 10 highest in the U.S. (Pexels photo)...

Arizona's $14.35 minimum wage will be one of the 10 highest in the U.S. (Pexels photo)

(Pexels photo)

PHOENIX — Arizona and 21 other states will see a minimum wage increase on Monday.

Nevada, Oregon, Florida and the District of Columbia will also increase their minimum wages later in 2024, according to Business for a Fair Minimum Wage.

After the new year, Washington and California will be the states with the highest minimum wages at $16.28 and $16 per hour respectively. The District of Columbia’s minimum wage is currently at $17.

Many companies across the country are in favor of an increased minimum wage, citing the benefits of consumer spending and employee well-being.

“Minimum wage increases are a great way to start the new year,” Holly Sklar, CEO of Business for a Fair Minimum Wage, said in a press release. “They help workers put food on the table and keep a roof overhead and they boost the consumer spending that businesses depend on.”

Fairer wages help businesses hire and retain employees, she said. When workers are paid well, they deliver better customer service, she added. This can encourage repeat customers instead of lost customers, Sklar said.

“While the federal minimum wage falls further and further behind the cost of living at just $7.25 an hour, state increases are vital for workers, businesses and communities,” Sklar said.

The minimum wage in Arizona is increasing to $14.35, which is a 50-cent increase from the current minimum wage of $13.85.

According to the Industrial Commission of Arizona, the increase is a result of the 3.7% rise in inflation from August 2022 to August 2023. The minimum wage in Arizona in 2022 was $12.80. The jump from 2022 to 2023 was the largest since 2017, when the minimum wage increased from $8.05 to $10.00.

Some Arizona cities still apply their own minimum wage, such as Flagstaff. The minimum wage in Flagstaff will increase to $17.40 per hour from $16.80 per hour come Monday.

“I welcome the minimum wage increases this year in Colorado and Arizona,” Pete Turner, owner of Illegal Pete’s Restaurants in Colorado and Arizona, said. “At our restaurants, we have seen that better compensation helps with employee hiring and retention, keeps turnover costs low and keeps customers coming back. That is a huge benefit to our bottom line.”

Despite many states increasing their minimum wage, the federal minimum wage is still at $7.25 and has not seen an increase since July 24, 2009. Twenty states still observe the federal minimum wage which has now been unchanged for the longest duration in history.

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Minimum wage hike will positively impact Arizona businesses