The Lexington-Fayette Urban County Government’s minimum wage ordinance went into effect earlier this month, increasing the minimum wage requirements for all employers within Lexington-Fayette County. As of July 1, 2016, the minimum wage for Lexington is $8.20 per hour. On the same date, Louisville’s minimum wage hit $8.25 pursuant to that city’s minimum wage ordinance, which first raised Louisville’s minimum wage to $7.75 as of July 1, 2015. Kentucky’s state minimum wage requirement matches the federal minimum wage at $7.25 per hour.
Does a local government have the authority to invoke a minimum wage that is higher than Kentucky’s requirement? This is one of the issues that Kentucky’s Supreme Court may soon decide in the case of Kentucky Restaurant Association, et al. v. Louisville/Jefferson County Metro Government, Case No. 2015-SC-371. If the Court answers the question in the negative, the mandatory minimum wage rates in Lexington and Louisville will drop back down to $7.25 per hour.