New Mexico’s minimum wage increases to $11.50 an hour on January 1 | Local News

New Mexico’s minimum wage continues to edge closer to base wage in the city and county of Santa Fe, maintaining the highest local minimum in the state at $12.32 per hour.

On Saturday, the statewide minimum wage will increase to $11.50 an hour, an increase of $1 from the current $10.50.

At the start of 2021, the Santa Fe minimum was $12.10 per hour, while the statewide rate was $9, a difference of $3.10. On January 1, the difference will be reduced to 82 cents. The region’s minimum wage will likely increase slightly in March, when city and county wages are expected to see a hike. Under the ordinances of each government, the salary increased annually on March 1 based on the consumer price index for the western region. This year, the increase was only 22 cents.

New Mexico will start 2022 with the 16th-highest minimum wage among states, according to, a human capital management software company.

In January 2021, the state minimum caught up to rates set in Albuquerque and Las Cruces. Both cities previously had higher minimum wages than the state, but chose only to match the statewide $10.50 that went into effect this year.

Saturday’s hike will be the third of four major annual minimum wage increases mandated by Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham and approved by the Legislative Assembly in 2019. The legislation calls for another increase – to $12 on Jan. 1, 2023.

The 2019 legislation took an aggressive approach to raising the state’s minimum wage from $7.50, which had been in place since 2009, to $12 over four years. The legislation, however, does not address the minimum wage beyond 2023.

Meanwhile, President Joe Biden is pushing for an increase in the federal minimum wage to $15. Earlier this year, the City of Santa Fe committed to a $15 minimum for city employees, and the state plans to pay at least $15 to all of its employees.

The state minimum wage for tipped workers will increase from $2.55 to $2.80 per hour. The rate, which applies primarily to restaurant and bar workers, requires business owners to pay employees tips of at least $2.80 per hour, with tips required to be at least the minimum of $11.50 for all workers.

The tipping minimum wage varies widely between major cities in New Mexico. Starting Jan. 1, the minimum tip in Albuquerque will be $6.90 per hour, while the rate will be $4.60 in Las Cruces and $3.69 in the city and county of Santa F.

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