On a party line vote, Senate Joint Resolution 13a was approved and now heads to the House floor. Senate Joint Resolution is a constitutional amendment that allows voters to decide whether to raise the minimum wage. The minimum wage increase is tied to the cost of living. The bill is co-sponsored by Sen. Richard Martinez (D-Rio Arriba, Los Alamos, Sandoval, Santa Fe– 5) and Rep. Miguel Garcia (D-Bernalillo-14).
If passed in November of 2014, New Mexico’s minimum wage would be raised from $7.50 to $8.30 an hour, the proposal would adjust the state's minimum wage for inflation since 2009.
The minimum wage would then increase each year for inflation, but it couldn't rise more than 4 percent annually. It's estimated the wage rate would reach $8.40 in July 2016 and $8.60 in 2017, according to the Legislative Finance Committee.
Currently New Mexicans who make minimum wage, who work 40 hrs/wk for 52 weeks (2080 hrs) for $7.50/hr yield an annual salary of $15,600, or $300 a week, this keeps a family of two or more far below the current federal poverty line of $19,553, which was set in 1968.