Effective January 1, 2009, the Montana minimum wage will increase by 35 cents, from $6.55 to $6.90 per hour.
Montana law requires an adjustment to the state minimum wage to be calculated no later than September 30 of each year, based on the Consumer Price Index (CPI) for the previous 12 months. This amount is to be rounded to the nearest 5 cents.
The current 2008 minimum wage rate is $6.55 per hour and the CPI increased 5.4 percent from August 2007 to August 2008. So the minimum wage will increase by 35 cents, to $6.90.
“This gives those Montanans who are struggling to keep up with higher energy and food prices some much needed help, “says Labor Commissioner Keith Kelly.
According to the Montana Department of Labor & Industry, more than 70 percent of the state voters supported raising Montana's minimum wage when they voted in favor of Initiative 151 that appeared on the ballot in 2006. The state's minimum wage will be the greater of either the current state or federal minimum wage. So on July 24, 2009, when the federal minimum wage increase to $7.25 per hour, which will be higher than state minimum wage $6.90 at that time, the Montana state minimum wage will increase again to $7.25 per hour.