Seyfarth Synopsis: The great California patchwork of minimum wage ordinances might have employers feeling full of matatas, but no worries! Seyfarth is here to explain the circle of life of these laws so that even the slowest hyena could follow.

More Food For The Whole Flock

As of July 1, 2019, many California counties and municipalities have upped the ante with ordinances that increase local minimum wage rates. Some municipalities prescribe different rate increases depending on the number of employees in the herd, while others specify that hotel and government assisted workers receive special treatment. Even the most studious of lions may have trouble mastering the different local herds’ pay, but the chart below is a handy cheat sheet to help guide the way.


Pre-July 1, 2019 Minimum Wage

Post-July 1, 2019 Minimum Wage Hike

Alameda $11 for small employers and $12 for large employers $13.50 for all employers
Berkeley $15 $15.59
City of Los Angeles – for fewer than 26 employees $12 $13.25
City of Los Angeles – for more than 25 employees $13.25 $14.25
City of Los Angeles – hotel workers exclusively $16.10 $16.63
County of Los Angeles Unincorporated – fewer than 26 employees $12 $13.25
County of Los Angeles Unincorporated – for more than 25 employees $13.25 $14.25
Emeryville – fewer than 56 employees $15 $16.30
Emeryville – more than 55 employees $15.69 $16.30
Fremont $12 $13.50
Long Beach $14.64 $14.97
Malibu – fewer than 26 employees $12 $13.25
Malibu – more than 25 employees $13.25 $14.25
Milpitas $13.50 $15
Oakland – hotel workers without benefits exclusively $13.80 $20
Oakland – hotel workers with benefits $13.80 $15
Pasadena – fewer than 26 employees $12 $13.25
Pasadena – more than 25 employees $13.25 $14.25
San Diego* $12 $12 (no change)
San Francisco $15 $15.59
San Francisco – government supported employees exclusively $13.27 $13.79
San Francisco – non-Profit Employers** $15 16.50
San Francisco – for-Profit Employers** $15 $17.66
San Francisco – Public Entities** (If the city appropriates funds for the increase in the budget) $16 $16.50
San Leandro $13 $14
Santa Monica – fewer than 26 employees $12 $13.25
Santa Monica – more than 25 employees $13 $14.25
Santa Monica – hotel workers exclusively $16.10 $16.63

*San Diego did not have a minimum wage increase scheduled for July 1, 2019

**SFO airport tenants, subtenants and their subcontractors, contractors and subcontractors providing services to city and county of San Francisco, and public entities within the city and county who have city contracts must follow San Francisco’s Minimum Compensation Ordinance. The MCO includes 12 paid days off per year (or cash equivalent) and 10 days off per year without pay.

What’s more, as of July 18, 2019, the U.S. House passed a $15 per hour minimum wage, which would raise the federal hourly rate from the current $7.25. However, the bill is unlikely to pass in the current Senate. Either way, keep your ears perked for future news on this development, since it’s important to always look where you’re headed rather than where you were!

Workplace Solutions: For help troubleshooting specific ordinance questions (including navigating the various posting and notification requirements of the specific local ordinances) or help reaching Hakuna Matata, contact your favorite Seyfarth attorney. Or Timon and Pumbaa. Until then, Long Live the King!

Edited by Coby Turner and Elizabeth Levy

Related Posts:

This New Year, Raise Your Glasses And the Minimum Wage

San Diego Voters Enact Paid Sick Leave, Higher Minimum Wage