Florida workers in manual labor jobs and those just starting out in the workforce, as well as businesses employing these workers, may not entirely understand wage and hour laws. It’s especially important for minimum wage workers and those that employ them to take note of the specifics – and possible upcoming changes.
The new Florida minimum wage
On Sept. 30, the minimum wage in Florida increased to $10 per hour, up from $8.56. The rise (amending Section 24 of Article X of the state constitution) was the initial step in an incremental series of raises that will culminate with the minimum wage reaching $15 per hour after six years.
By 2026, Florida’s minimum wage will rise to $15 per hour. Advocates hope that the increase will help address statewide poverty.
Recent bill proposed to modify minimum wage rate
However, a new Florida bill, SJR 382, was recently proposed that aims to amend Florida’s constitution and to modify the new wage. The amendment being considered in the upcoming 2022 session would allow employers to pay new workers a “minimum training wage” which would take affect during the worker’s first six months on the job.
The amount, however, is yet to be determined, but will likely be modeled after the current federal temporary training wage rate.
If the state legislature approves of the amendment once back in session next year, it would still need approval from registered Florida voters. In order to take full effect, the law would be placed on the ballot next year with 60% of Florida voters needed to vote “yes.”
Knowing the law
The recent law coupled with the 2022 proposed constitutional amendment illustrates the importance – for both employers and employees alike – to understand the law when it comes to the wage workers are entitled to recover and when. Those with specific questions should speak to a legal professional with a thorough understanding of wage and hour laws.