Santa Fe, New Mexico’s Living Wage Act requires covered employers to pay employees who work in the city a minimum wage, or “living wage,” that the city determines is adequate to meet the basic needs of living in Santa Fe. Every year, Santa Fe’s minimum wage rate is adjusted for inflation. Effective March 1, 2018, the minimum wage rate increases to $11.40 per hour. This represents a 2.8% increase over last year. It’s the largest minimum wage increase in Santa Fe since 2011. For full-time minimum wage workers, the 2018 increase will amount to roughly an additional $50 each month. Employers must post the Santa Fe Living Wage Act Poster with the effective minimum wage rate in the workplace to inform employees of their rights.
The city’s Living Wage Ordinance applies to:
- Businesses required to have a business license or registration from the city
- Contractors who have a contract for services including construction services, but excluding purchases of goods, where the total contract amount with the city is equal to or greater than thirty thousand dollars ($30,000)
- Businesses receiving assistance relating to economic development in the form of grants, subsidies, loan guarantees or industrial revenue bonds greater than twenty-five thousand dollars ($25,000)
- Nonprofit organizations, except nonprofit organizations whose primary source of funds is Medicaid
- MINIMUM WAGES: All employees, including full-time, part-time and temporary employees, must be paid the effective minimum wage rate for all hours worked within the city of Santa Fe, for work performed under a covered contract, or for the duration of the grant or subsidy.
- TIPPED EMPLOYEES: For employees who customarily receive more than $100 per month in tips or commissions, any tips or commissions received and retained by the worker count toward satisfaction of the Living Wage rate.
- MINIMUM WAGE POSTING: Covered employers are required to post and display in a prominent location next to the organization’s business license or registration, in English and Spanish, the city’s 2018 Living Wage Poster.
The Living Wage Ordinance permits employees who believe they are being paid less than the minimum wage rate to file a complaint with the city. Wage complaints have been up in recent years, with mixed outcomes. Several cases have been closed for “insufficient evidence” and some have proceeded to litigation. Wage violations have also been at the center of public protests.
Some observers have voiced a concern that many violations go unreported and point to lack of information about the city’s living wage, tolerance of repeat offenders, language barriers, and weaknesses in the city’s investigation and enforcement procedures as causes of noncompliance and underreporting of violations. The climate may be changing. Recently, Santa Fe Mayoral candidates promised to make wage compliance a priority and more aggressive tactics such as anonymous hotlines, spot checks and terminating business licenses of noncompliant employers are becoming part of the conversation.
Make sure your workplace is in compliance with Santa Fe’s Living Wage posting requirement – order your Santa Fe Living Wage Poster today!