RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — A new proposal to the General Assembly would establish a state minimum wage for children, who have otherwise been excluded from the past years’ increases.
HB 1669, patronized by Del. Daniel Marshall (R-Danville), would set the minimum wage for anyone under the age of eighteen at $9 an hour. That’s $3 lower than the current general minimum wage, which increased to $12 an hour on Jan. 1 but almost $3 higher than the currently applicable federal rate.
Under current Virginia law, anyone “less than 18 years of age and who is currently enrolled on a full-time basis” in school is completely exempt from the state minimum wage. That means the standard defaults to federal law, which sets the wage for underage students at 85% of the federal minimum — about $6.16 an hour.
Of course, it can be difficult for students and others exempted from the minimum wage to figure out exactly how much they’re owed for their time, because employers in Virginia aren’t required to post information about the state minimum wage publicly — as they are for worker’s compensation and other labor laws, including the federal minimum wage.
And the state’s own employment commission, on its FAQ page, still lists the minimum wage at the federal level: $7.25 an hour.