Oregon minimum wage could take the title as the most complex in the nation.
It is governed by a unique system. Minimum wage in Oregon is generally applied by county — the more densely populated an area is, the higher the rate.
But the rates don’t perfectly align with county boundaries, making tracking and applying rates especially cumbersome for employers with locations in Oregon.
Oregon minimum wage has three separate rates, which most recently increased July 1, 2022.
However, that was the final scheduled increase under the minimum wage law in Oregon. Beginning July 1, 2023, and in succeeding years, the Oregon minimum wage will go up based on inflation.
At a high level, Oregon minimum wage (as of March 2023) breaks down like this.
$14.75 per hour – Portland metro
Areas within the Urban Growth Boundary, including parts of Clackamas, Multnomah and Washington counties.
$13.50 per hour – Standard
Benton, Clatsop, Columbia, Deschutes, Hood River, Jackson, Josephine, Lane, Lincoln, Linn, Marion, Polk, Tillamook, Wasco, Yamhill, and parts of Clackamas, Multnomah and Washington outside the Urban Growth Boundary.
$12.50 per hour – Non-urban
Baker, Coos, Crook, Curry, Douglas, Gilliam, Grant, Harney, Jefferson, Klamath, Lake, Malheur, Morrow, Sherman, Umatilla, Union, Wallowa and Wheeler counties.
Again, though, the rates aren’t always applied evenly across counties. Fortunately, the state provides an Urban Growth Boundary tool to help employers identify which rates apply to their locations.
Lastly, the state does not have a separate rate for tipped employees.