The Raleigh City Council today approved a living wage policy for full-time employees and referred the guidelines to the City Manager for implementation in the upcoming budget process. The policy outlines a living wage calculation that considers the cost of housing for employees to live within the City of Raleigh.
The annual cost impact of the new policy is an increase in approximately $500,000 in salaries.
The adopted policy establishes the minimum living wage for City employees who are receiving health insurance benefits at $13.76 per hour or an annual earnings minimum of $28,621. This represents an increase of almost 15 percent from the current minimum full-time rate of $12.01 per hour or annual earnings of $24,991.
According to City of Raleigh Human Resources Director Steve Jones, the living wage shows that the City recognizes the importance of establishing a minimum pay level for full time employees to be able to afford to live in the City they serve.
“Establishing a living wage gives us the ability to attract and retain employees who are committed to public service, who will help us achieve our goals, and make Raleigh such a wonderful place to live, work, and play,” he said. “This is a movement that has been growing and developing within local governments across the nation. The Council’s action is a big step forward.”
More than 140 municipalities across the country have adopted a living wage policy including more than 10 in North Carolina. Initially, there are 23 positions that will be impacted affecting 143 employees.