County raises living wage to 16.75 an hour | Press Releases | County Administrator’s Office

Sainte Rose, CaliforniaDecember 14, 2021 The Sonoma County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously today to raise the county’s living wage to $16.75 an hour, its first increase since passing the landmark anti-combat ordinance. poverty in 2015.

The 11.7% increase, which takes effect Jan. 1, 2022, sets a minimum wage for all individuals employed directly by Sonoma County and workers at certain private companies and nonprofits who contract with the county government. The increase maintains pay rates for county government employees and contract workers before the state minimum wage, which increases on January 1, 2022 to $14 per hour for employers with 25 or fewer workers and to 15 $ per hour for employers with 26 or more workers. .

“This conversation is fundamentally about economic dignity. We try to invest in the kind of society we want to live in,” said Lynda Hopkins, chair of the supervisory board. “We are united and moving in the right direction.”

The Living Wage Ordinance was enacted in December 2015 to help low-wage workers earn an hourly wage that allows them to live in dignity and achieve economic self-reliance. It was the culmination of a series of meetings, town halls and discussions with community partners, and represents an important facet of the oversight board’s commitment to poverty reduction strategies.

The county’s Department of General Services estimates the wage increase will add $542,000 in annual costs to the contracts it manages, including contracts for janitorial services, fleet repair, auto parts, targeted grazing , sanitation services, veterans building management and security services. Financial impacts on other county departments, likely to include health services, social services and the sheriff’s office detention unit, have yet to be estimated.

The new salary will take effect on January 1, 2022 for all new contracts and will be phased in to existing contracts by April 1, 2022. It applies to private companies with six or more employees if they provide $25,000 per year or more in contracts. county services and non-profit organizations that have 25 or more employees and provide more than $50,000 annually in services to the county. The requirements also apply to entities that receive more than $100,000 annually in economic development assistance. All county government suppliers must certify that they have complied with the Living Wage Ordinance during the procurement process.

The wage has stood at $15 an hour since it was implemented in July 2016. Repeated natural disasters from 2017 to 2020 delayed the county’s annual review of the ordinance — a precursor to any wage adjustments – until September 2021.

The Supervisory Board agreed to consider further changes to the order in 2022, including a proposal from North Bay Jobs with Justice and the North Bay Labor Council to grant 12 days of paid sick/personal leave to all employees covered.

Four other Northern California counties — Marin, San Francisco, Santa Clara and Santa Cruz — have enacted a living wage ordinance, according to the UC Berkeley Labor Center. Sevastopol, Sonoma and Petaluma have also passed living wage ordinances.


Michael A. Bynum