2013 - 2014 LEGISLATURE
February 3, 2014 - Introduced by Representative Sinicki. Referred to Committee
1An Act to renumber
104.01 (1); to renumber and amend
104.045; to amend
49.141 (1) (g), 103.67 (2) (fm) 3., 103.70 (2) (b) 3., 104.01 (intro.), 104.01 (8), 3
104.04, 104.05, 104.07 (1), 104.07 (2), 104.10, 104.11, 234.94 (5), 234.94 (8), 4
800.09 (1j), 800.095 (1) (d) and 895.035 (2m) (c); to repeal and recreate
104.06; and to create
15.227 (1), 19.85 (1) (ej), 104.01 (1d), 104.01 (1g), 104.01 6
(5m), 104.01 (7m), 104.035 and 104.045 (2) and (3) of the statutes; relating to:
7creation of a wage council to study and make recommendations concerning
8increases in the living wage, increasing the state minimum wage, and granting
Analysis by the Legislative Reference Bureau
Under the current state minimum wage law, employers are required to pay to
their employees a living wage, which is defined as compensation that is sufficient to
enable an employee to maintain himself or herself under conditions consistent with
his or her welfare. Under that law, the Department of Workforce Development
(DWD) is required to investigate and determine the living wage. If, upon
investigation, DWD finds that there is reasonable cause to believe that the wages
paid to any employee are not a living wage, DWD must appoint a wage council,
selected so as fairly to represent employers, employees, and the public, to assist DWD
in its investigations and determinations. In determining the living wage, DWD may
consider the effect that an increase in the living wage might have on the economy of
the state, including the effect of a living wage increase on job creation, retention, and
expansion; on the availability of entry-level jobs; and on regional economic
conditions within the state.
This bill creates a permanent wage council in DWD and requires the wage
council, early in each regular session of the legislature, to convene for the purpose
of studying the need for an increase in the living wage and making recommendations
to DWD for any changes in the living wage that may be necessary to ensure that the
wages paid to any employee are a living wage. The wage council, in conducting that
study and making those recommendations, and DWD, in revising the living wage,
must consider: 1) any changes in the consumer price index; 2) the effect of those
changes on the real income of employees in this state; and 3) the effect that an
increase in the living wage might have on the economy of the state, including the
effect of a living wage increase on job creation, retention, and expansion; on the
availability of entry-level jobs; and on regional economic conditions within the state.
If DWD approves the findings and recommendations of the wage council, DWD may
promulgate rules to revise the living wage.
In addition, the bill specifies that the biennial living wage revision procedure
created under the bill does not preclude DWD from convening the wage council at
other times during the regular session of the legislature if, upon investigation, DWD
finds that there is reasonable cause to believe that the wages paid to any employee
are not a living wage. If DWD so convenes the wage council, the wage council so
convened must study the need for an increase in the living wage and report its
recommendations as provided in the bill.
Finally, the bill increases the minimum wage for employees generally,
beginning on January 1, 2015, from $7.25 per hour to $8 per hour or an amount
determined by DWD by rule, whichever is greater.
For further information see the state and local fiscal estimate, which will be
printed as an appendix to this bill.
The people of the state of Wisconsin, represented in senate and assembly, do
enact as follows:
15.227 (1) of the statutes is created to read:
15.227 (1) Wage council.
There is created in the department of workforce 3
development a wage council consisting of all of the following members:
(a) Five representatives of employers, including a representative of an 2
association that is primarily composed of small businesses, appointed by the 3
secretary of workforce development for 3-year terms.
(b) Five representatives of employees appointed by the secretary of workforce 5
development for 3-year terms.
(c) The chairpersons and ranking minority party members of one senate 7
standing committee and one assembly standing committee concerned with labor 8
issues, appointed as are the members of standing committees in their respective 9
(d) Five representatives of the public interest who do not have the 11
qualifications of the members described in pars. (a) to (c) appointed by the secretary 12
of workforce development for 3-year terms.
19.85 (1) (ej) of the statutes is created to read:
(ej) Deliberating by the wage council in a meeting at which all 15
employer members of the council or all employee members of the council are 16
49.141 (1) (g) of the statutes is amended to read:
(g) "Minimum wage" means the state minimum hourly wage under 19ch. 104 s. 104.035 (1)
or the federal minimum hourly wage under 29 USC 206
(a) (1), 20
whichever is applicable.
103.67 (2) (fm) 3. of the statutes is amended to read:
(fm) 3. The minor is paid the applicable minimum wage under ch.
23104 s. 104.035
or under federal law, whichever is greater, for the work.
103.70 (2) (b) 3. of the statutes is amended to read:
(b) 3. The minor is paid the applicable minimum wage under ch. 104 2s. 104.035
or under federal law, whichever is greater, for the work.
104.01 (intro.) of the statutes is amended to read:
(intro.) The following terms as used in In
this chapter 5shall be construed as follows
104.01 (1) of the statutes is renumbered 104.01 (1m).
104.01 (1d) of the statutes is created to read:
"Agricultural employee" means an employee who is employed in 9
the operation of farm premises, as described in s. 102.04 (3).
104.01 (1g) of the statutes is created to read:
"Consumer price index" means the average of the consumer price 12
index over each 12-month period for all urban consumers, U.S. city average, all 13
items, not seasonally adjusted, as determined by the bureau of labor statistics of the 14
federal department of labor.
104.01 (5m) of the statutes is created to read:
"Opportunity employee" means a person under 20 years of age who 17
is in the first 90 consecutive days of employment with his or her employer.
104.01 (7m) of the statutes is created to read:
"Tipped employee" means an employee who in the course of 20
employment customarily and regularly receives money or other gratuities from 21
persons other than the employee's employer.
104.01 (8) of the statutes is amended to read:
104.01 (8) The term "wage" and the term "wages" shall each mean "Wage"
any compensation for labor measured by time, piece,
104.035 of the statutes is created to read:
1104.035 Minimum wage. (1) Employees generally.
Except as provided in 2
subs. (2) and (3), the minimum wage for wages earned beginning on January 1, 2015, 3
is $8 per hour or the amount determined by the department by rule promulgated 4
under s. 106.04, whichever is greater.
5(2) Minimum wage established by department.
The department shall 6
promulgate rules providing the minimum wage for all of the following:
(a) Tipped employees.
(b) Opportunity employees.
(c) Agricultural employees.
(d) Camp counselors.
(e) Golf caddies.
(f) An employee or worker with a disability covered under a license under s. 13