What are Minimum Wage Laws?
Minimum wage refers to the lowest hourly, daily or monthly pay that an employer must legally provide to their workers. Simply put, minimum wage laws set a figure for the lowest wage which workers may sell their labor. Although these laws are practiced in the majority of jurisdictions, differences of opinions exist regarding the positives and negatives of minimum wage laws.
What is the Minimum Wage in NJ?
The minimum wage in New Jersey is currently set at $7.25 per hour for the taxable year of 2012. Minimum wage in NJ is based on a 40 hour work week. The minimum wage in New Jersey is set at the Federal Minimum Wage Level—the United States Federal Government established the minimum wage for 2012 at $7.25; states may institute their own minimum wage above this level but may not go below it. Minimum wage in NJ us currently uniform to the federal level.
The New Jersey Minimum Wage is elastic with the federal minimum wage; when the federal minimum wage raises the New Jersey Minimum wage also raises. Unlike other states, agricultural and seasonal workers are not exempt from the Minimum wage in New Jersey.
According to minimum wages in New Jersey, college students may be paid as little as 85% of the New Jersey minimum wage. Moreover, select occupations held by individuals under the age of 18 are completely exempt from Minimum wage in New Jersey laws. Also, employees at religious summer camps, retreats or nonprofit organizations are exempt from minimum wage in New Jersey between the months of June and September.
A New Jersey employer is not permitted to pay any of their employees under $7.25 per hour unless they are specifically exempt from the minimum wage laws instituted by the state or federal government. Moreover, minimum wage in NJ law states that all New Jersey employers must openly display an official New Jersey minimum wage poster in a viewable or prominent place within their place of business to inform employees about the minimum wage and their employee rights under New Jersey labor law.
Minimum Wage in New Jersey for 2013:
Currently, New Jersey legislators are attempting to pass a bill that would effectively raise the minimum wage in New Jersey to $8.50 an hour for the 2013 calendar year. The bill has already won a legislative panel’s approval and is being pushed as a priority by Democrats who control both houses. The bill is currently waiting to be heard in the Senate. The bill—which changes minimum wage in NJ–requires passage by both chambers and must be signed by the governor to become an official law. The state of New Jersey is currently home to approximately 30,000 minimum wage workers.
The proposal for an alteration in minimum wage in NJ laws also asks for automatic annual adjustments linked to the CPI (Consumer Price Index). Supporters of the bill claims that a relationship with the CPI will effectively bolster low earner’s purchasing power in the upcoming years moreso than simply raising the minimum wage in New Jersey periodically.