Christmas has come early to many Chicago workers. On Dec. 2, 2014, the Chicago City Council voted by a 44 to 5 margin to create a “city minimum wage” that increases the minimum wage for those who work in Chicago. In January 2015, the minimum wage will increase from $8.25 to $10 per hour. The minimum wage will increase to $13 per hour by July 2019.
Many are predicting fall out from this vote. For example, individuals working geographically close to Chicago may now look for work in Chicago to get a “raise”, but making it harder to find work in Chicago. On the other hand, businesses in Chicago may look to relocate to a border suburb or to Indiana where hourly wage rates will remain lower. At present, it does not seem as though the Illinois legislature intends to propose a bill to raise the minimum wage throughout Illinois. Of course, that could change quickly. Only time will tell what the impact of this raise in the minimum wage will be.