The Council of the District of Columbia has voted to raise the minimum wage to $15.00 per hour by 2020, and Washington, D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser is expected to approve the legislation.

On June 7, 2016, by a unanimous vote of 13–0, the D.C. councilmembers approved the “Fair Shot Minimum Wage Amendment Act of 2016.” Once enacted, the law will provide for the following minimum wage increases:

  • The minimum wage will increase to $12.50 per hour in July of 2017.
  • It will be raised each year thereafter until it reaches $15.00 per hour in July of 2020.
  • After 2020, the minimum wage will be increased each year to match the area’s Consumer Price Index as set by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The law will also raise the tipped minimum wage for employees who receive gratuities from the current $2.77 per hour rate, which has been in place since 2005.

  • The tipped minimum wage will be increased to $3.33 per hour in July of 2017.
  • It will be raised each year thereafter until it reaches $5.00 per hour in July of 2020, after which it will then increase each year to match the area’s Consumer Price Index.

The passage of the act is the product of efforts to raise the minimum wage in D.C., which included the Fair Minimum Wage Act of 2016, a similar initiative that had been expected to be on D.C. voters’ ballots this fall. Once the Fair Shot Minimum Wage Amendment Act is enacted, D.C. will join California, New York, and other jurisdictions increasing the minimum wage for employees. While this increase was not unexpected, employers should begin to prepare for the changes.