Denver approves minimum wage hike: increases to nearly $16 an hour in 2022

DENVER — Workers in the Mile High City are on track to see the minimum wage rise above $15 an hour in just over two years. The Denver City Council approved an ordinance to raise the minimum wage Monday night.

The plan, proposed by Mayor Michael Hancock and Councilwoman Robin Kniech, calls for each of the next three years to see incremental increases.

The ordinance set the following increases:

  • $12.85 an hour on Jan. 1, 2020
  • $14.77 an hour on Jan. 1, 2021
  • $15.87 an hour on Jan. 1, 2022

Annual adjustments past that point will be based on the Consumer Price Index.

At a contentious October meeting on the proposal, some Denver restaurant owners said closures and layoffs could be possible if the plan went through.

On Jan. 1, the statewide minimum wage will increase to $12 an hour. Previously, cities and counties could not set minimum wages above the statewide rate.

But a new law approved this year by the state legislature allows cities and counties to set their own rates.

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