West Virginia has become the latest state to raise its minimum wage
above the federal level of $7.25 an hour. Gov. Earl Tomblin signed the law Tuesday raising the state's minimum wage to $8.00 an hour in 2015 and $8.75 in 2016.
West Virginia's minimum wage increase is well short of the $10.10 an hour that Connecticut recently passed and which is the focus of Democratic efforts at the federal level. A year of full-time work at $8.75 an hour remains below the poverty threshold for a family of three—and that's this year. By 2016, that pay level will have fallen further behind the cost of living. Still, it's a significant increase, which:
... will still lift earnings for the 22,000 of the state’s 446,000 hourly workers who currently earn minimum wage, and tens of thousands more who currently earn above $7.25 but below $8.
The minimum wage bill also contains an expansion of overtime pay
that the legislature is expected to revisit before it goes into effect in June.