Oregon’s Second Minimum Wage Increase Takes Effect

By Megan J. Crowhurst © Bullard Law Jul 12, 2017

In March 2016, Oregon enacted a geographically-tiered minimum wage hike. The first increase went into effect last year. The second increase went into effect on July 1.  Scheduled annual minimum wage increases will continue through 2022. 

Effective July 1, for all employees performing work in the "Portland urban growth boundary," the minimum wage increased $1.50 from $9.75 to $11.25 per hour. These are businesses that employ workers in Clackamas, Multnomah and Washington counties. 

For employees performing work in the "standard" region, the minimum wage increased $0.50 from $9.75 to $10.25. These are businesses that employ workers in Benton, Clatsop, Columbia, Deschutes, Hood River, Jackson, Josephine, Lane, Lincoln, Linn, Marion, Polk, Tillamook, Wasco and Yamhill counties. 

For employees performing work in the "nonurban" region, the minimum wage increased $0.50 from $9.50 to $10.00 per hour. These are businesses that employ workers in Baker, Coos, Crook, Curry, Douglas, Gilliam, Grant, Harney, Jefferson, Klamath, Lake, Malheur, Morrow, Sherman, Umatilla, Union, Wallowa and Wheeler counties. 

Employers with individuals who provide services in multiple geographic regions in Oregon during any given pay period should follow these rules when evaluating which minimum wage rate applies: 

  • If an employee performs more than 50% of his/her work during a pay period at a fixed business location, the minimum wage rate for the region for that business location applies to all hours worked during the pay period.
  • Delivery workers who start and end their work at the same fixed business location should be paid at least the minimum wage rate for the region encompassing that business location, notwithstanding deliveries made outside that region.
  • For those employees who do not perform more than 50% of their work hours during a pay period at a fixed business location, the employer must either (a) track (and maintain a record of) where the employee performs his/her work and pay at least the applicable wage rate for each region where the work was performed, or (b) pay the highest wage rate required for any region in which the employee worked for all hours worked during the pay period.

In addition, employers should be sure to post the new minimum wage rates (available on the Bureau of Labor and Industries website) at their worksites.  Please feel welcome to contact Bullard Law with any questions regarding minimum wages or other labor, employment and employee benefits issues. 

Megan J. Crowhurst is an attorney with Bullard Law in Portland, Ore. © Bullard Law. All rights reserved. Reposted with permission.

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