A big wage increase is on the way to King County after council members this week approved what is now the highest wage in the nation.

THE LARGEST BUSINESSES IN THE COUNTY WILL PAY THE WAGE

The vote pushes the wage for the largest businesses in the county to $20.29 an hour well above the minimum wage in the state of Washington. The new wage takes effect next year. It wasn't a unanimous vote, 2 council members opposed the increase but 7 others voted in favor of the measure.

WORKERS SAY THEY WELCOME THE INCREASE TO HELP ENDS MEET

Currently the minimum wage, the highest in the United States is $16.28 up from $15.74 in January. Many people, especially in King County welcome the wage increase saying they're having problems making ends meet under the current wage. People in the county are having a hard time paying rent and gas prices.

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ARE YOUNG PEOPLE BEING HIRED?

Imagine being a young person making minimum wage money in King County. Remember when you got your first job at minimum wage? Many employers, unfortunately, aren't hiring young people because the wage is so high. Many business owners all around the state say they're looking for skilled workers who will commit to staying at the business considering the amount of money a business owner has to pay for labor.

THE WAGE WILL BE THE SAME IN ALL BUSINESSES BY 2030

Not everyone in King County will get the wage increase, it's only for those in the unincorporated areas of King County and won't impact workers in Seattle. The minimum wage in Seattle is currently $19.97. The wage increase takes effect on January 1 of 2025 and will impact large businesses with 500 or more employees.

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