Oregon had the second-highest state minimum wage in 2012, behind Washington. Oregon's 2013 rate will remain lower than Washington's minimum wage (which will likely increase to $9.19 per hour on January 1, 2013) but above the federal minimum wage rate, which rose to $7.25 per hour on July 24, 2009 and has stayed there since. The federal minimum wage is not adjusted annually for inflation.
According to unemployment insurance data, Oregon had roughly 130,000 jobs paying $8.95 per hour or less in the first quarter of 2012. This constitutes 7.8 percent of all jobs covered by Oregon's unemployment insurance. Leisure and hospitality has the highest number with 50,000 jobs paying $8.95 or less, and retail trade followed with 27,400 jobs. Industries in which a substantially larger-than-average share of jobs paid $8.95 per hour or less include leisure and hospitality, retail trade, and natural resources and mining.
Ballot Measure 25, enacted by Oregon voters in 2002, requires a minimum wage adjustment annually based on changes in inflation as measured by the U.S. City Average Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers for All Items (CPI-U). Oregon is one of 10 states that adjusts minimum wage based on inflation. The Commissioner of the Bureau of Labor and Industries is directed to adjust the minimum wage for inflation every September, rounded to the nearest five cents ( www.oregon.gov/BOLI).