On December 23, 2008, the State of New Jersey Minimum Wage Advisory Commission issued its Second Annual Report. In the report, the Commission recommended that New Jersey increase the state minimum wage from $7.15 per hour to $8.50 per hour in 2009, and that New Jersey should establish an automatic annual increase in the minimum wage rate for each subsequent year, based on the increase in the consumer price index. In addition, the Commission recommended that New Jersey establish a minimum cash wage requirement for tipped employees set at a percentage of the state minimum wage that is comparable to the “tip credit” percentage in surrounding states.  

It should be noted that in the Commission’s First Annual Report, issued in December 2007, the Commission recommended a minimum wage increase from $7.15 per hour to $8.25 per hour. However, its recommendations never were signed into law.