WASHINGTON, D.C. –
Over thirteen states have announced that they will be increasing their minimum wage level starting January 1st, and although that means more money for many people in their paychecks each week, the federal government has stepped in and announced a decrease in the federal minimum wage to balance out the state increases.
“For those of you who currently make minimum wage, which is $7.25 nationally, you will be kept where you are,” said President Obama during a press conference on Wednesday. “Starting January 1st, the federal minimum wage will be lowered to $6.80, which we hope will offset the increase levied by many state governments.”
In places such as California, the minimum wage is as high as $10, but in many states, particularly poorer or low-income states, the minimum wage has always followed the federal levels.
“This is insane, it truly is,” said Mark Jacobs, a fast food worker in Maine who has been out of work since June. “My hours were cut back to the point that I was laid off, but now if I go out to find a job, they don’t have to even pay me $7.25 anymore? At this rate I should just go move to Chicago. There they’re forcing employers to pay fast food workers $12 an hour, the same as their state workers! I’m not going to stay around here for six bucks, that’s for sure.”
President Obama said that this measure will be one of his final major acts as president, signing the new minimum wage levels into law on January 4th, when congress returns from holiday break.