Santa Fe’s living wage law
A Santa Fe ordinance that requires the capital city's largest employers to pay their workers $8.50 an hour has been upheld by the New Mexico Court of Appeals.
survives legal challenge
The appeals court ruled that the city had the power to set a minimum wage for private employers that is higher than the $5.15 federal and state minimum wage.
"The ordinance does not conflict with state law and is not otherwise unconstitutional," wrote Judge Cynthia Fry. Read the court decision here.
The so-called living wage ordinance, adopted by the Santa Fe City Council in 2003, also requires most companies with 25 or more workers to pay $9.50 an hour next year and $10.50 in 2008. Read the ordinance here.
Read the Sante Fe New Mexican report here.
Since 1994, more than 130 cities have enacted living wage laws that increase the minimum wage for workers at businesses performing city contracts. More recently, cities like Santa Fe have enacted broader minimum wage laws that raise pay for workers at all private businesses in their communities — not just those performing city contracts. In addition to Santa Fe, San Francisco and Washington, D.C., have enacted citywide minimum wage laws and Santa Cruz is considering doing so. Other cities are exploring local laws to raise the minimum wage for workers in specific industries. This month Emeryville, California, enacted a local $9 minimum wage for hotel workers, and Chicago and Washington, D.C., are considering $10 minimum wages for workers at “big box” retail stores.