As employers and workers adjust to the new year and new laws, it is crucial to understand recent changes to California’s minimum wage law.  In this blog post, we outline the key points employers should be aware of regarding the 2024 minimum wage increases across California.  

Minimum Wage Increases Effective January 1, 2024

The general state minimum wage for all employers has increased from $15.50 to $16.00 per hour. This applies to businesses of all sizes, with a few notable industry-specific exceptions.

Industry-Specific Increases

Fast Food Restaurants: Starting April 1, 2024, the minimum wage for employees in covered fast food restaurants jumps to $20.00 per hour. This increase is under Assembly Bill 1228, which focuses on improving working conditions and wages for fast-food workers.

Health Care Facilities: Covered health care workers in California will see a tiered minimum wage increase depending on their employer, effective June 1, 2024. This increase is based on Senate Bill 525 and ranges from $18.00 to $21.00 to $23.00 per hour.

California Municipality Minimum Wage Increases

Below is a list highlighting California’s municipalities that have implemented new minimum wage rates effective this year.  We also highlighted cities where minimum wages increased mid-2023, as noted.

  • Alameda: $16.72 (implemented July 1, 2023)
  • Belmont: $17.35 
  • Berkeley: $18.07 (implemented July 1, 2023)
  • Burlingame: $17.03
  • Cupertino: $17.75
  • Daly City: $16.62
  • East Palo Alto: $17.00
  • El Cerrito: $17.92
  • Emeryville: $18.67 (implemented July 1, 2023)
  • Foster City: $17.00
  • Fremont: $16.80 (implemented July 1, 2023)
  • Half Moon Bay: $17.01
  • Hayward:$16.00 (25 or fewer employees); $16.90 (26 or more employees)
  • Long Beach (Hotels): $17.55 (implemented July 1, 2023)
  • Los Altos: $17.75
  • Los Angeles (City): $16.78 (implemented July 1, 2023)
  • Los Angeles (County – unincorporated areas): $16.90 (implemented July 1, 2023)
  • Los Angeles (Hotels with 60+ rooms): $19.73 (implemented July 1, 2023)
  • Malibu: $16.90 (implemented July 1, 2023)
  • Menlo Park: $16.70
  • Milpitas: $17.20 (implemented July 1, 2023)
  • Mountain View: $18.75
  • Novato: $16.04 (25 or fewer employees); $16.60 (26-99 employees); $16.86 (100 or more employees)
  • Oakland: $16.50 
  • Oakland (Hotels with 50+ rooms): $17.94 for workers with health benefits; $23.91 without health benefits. 
  • Palo Alto: $17.80
  • Pasadena: $16.93 (implemented July 1, 2023)
  • Petaluma: $17.45
  • Redwood City: $17.70
  • Richmond: $17.20
  • San Carlos: $16.87
  • San Diego: $16.85
  • San Francisco: $18.07 (implemented July 1, 2023)
  • San Jose: $17.55
  • San Mateo (city): $17.35
  • San Mateo County: $17.06
  • Santa Monica: $16.90 (implemented July 1, 2023)
  • Santa Clara: $17.75
  • Santa Rosa: $17.45
  • Sonoma (city): $16.56 (25 or fewer employees); $17.60 (26 or more employees)
  • South San Francisco: $17.25
  • Sunnyvale: $18.55 
  • West Hollywood: $19.08

Please note, this is not an exhaustive list of all local minimum wage ordinances. 

Understanding the Impact of Minimum Wage Changes on Overtime Exemption Criteria in California

The adjustment to the minimum wage impacts the minimum salary that an employee needs to earn to qualify for one of the overtime exemption criteria.  Employees who are exempt do not receive overtime pay for extra hours worked. To satisfy the primary condition of the exemption criteria, an employee’s earnings must be at least double the state’s minimum wage for full-time employment. Starting January 1, 2024, to fulfill this key requirement in California, employees must have an annual salary of at least $66,560.

Looking Ahead for Minimum Wages

A new ballot initiative proposes raising the minimum wage to $18 per hour by 2026, with annual cost-of-living adjustments thereafter. This initiative will be on the ballot for the November 2024 election.

Additional Reminders: While these are the minimum wage requirements, employers are free to extend higher wages to their employees. Employers should also be aware of and comply with all applicable minimum wage laws, including posting required notices and keeping appropriate records, in order to avoid any fines, wage claims, and/or penalties.  Local municipality minimum wages are subject to change, and therefore should be checked on a regular basis for compliance. 

Contact Hackler Flynn & Associates to help you stay informed about these important changes to ensure compliance and fair compensation practices in California.

DISCLAIMER: Content within this post should not be considered legal advice and is for informational purposes only. Communications made through this post do not create an attorney-client relationship. Hackler Flynn & Associates is not responsible for any content that you may access from third-party resources that may be accessed through or linked to this post. Hackler Flynn & Associates is only licensed to practice in California.

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