Oregon minimum wage will rise again Jan. 1

Oregon Labor and Industries Commissioner Brad Avakian today announced that Oregon's minimum wage will increase to $9.10 on Jan. 1, providing a 15 cents per hour raise for 98,000 minimum wage workers.

The adjustment will mean that directly-affected employees working 30 hours a week will have $234 more to spend on goods in 2014, officials said. The increase is expected to generate more than $20 million in new consumer spending for Oregon's economy.

A 2002 ballot measure supported by a coalition of senior, labor and religious leaders — and sponsored by Senate Majority Leader Diane Rosenbaum — directs the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries to adjust the state's minimum wage annually based on inflation. Each year, Commissioner Avakian calculates the adjustment by measuring the increase to the Consumer Price Index, a figure published by the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics to track prices for a fixed "market basket" of goods.

Avakian reports that indexing the minimum wage helps provide businesses with a high level of predictability for payroll expenses over time, avoiding major spikes.

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