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The bell tolls for old minimum wage

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Connecticut’s minimum wage will increase to $8.70 per hour as of Jan. 1. The current minimum wage is $8.25 an hour.

“This increase to $8.70 is the first part of a two-year increase in the minimum wage,” Sharon Palmer, labor commissioner, said in a statement billed as a reminder. “On Jan. 1, 2015, in accordance with Public Act 13-117, Connecticut’s minimum wage will increase to $9.”

Although the federal minimum wage is currently $7.25, Connecticut businesses must pay the state minimum wage, according to Gary K. Pechie, director of the labor department’s Division of Wage and Workplace Standards.

Food-and-beverage establishments have different rules.

Under section 31-60 of the Connecticut General Statutes and Public Act 13-117, “the Connecticut minimum wage rate for service employees, specifically restaurant wait staff and bartenders, is determined by using a formula that takes tip deductions into account.”

The restaurant/bar rates are available at the labor department’s website at www.ct.gov/dol or by contacting the Division of Wage and Workplace Standards at (860) 263-6790.

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