Montana’s minimum wage is higher than any of its neighbors except for South Dakota and according to Montana Bureau of Labor and Industry economist Barbara Wagner, it went up again this week.

"Montana minimum wage increased up to $8.30 on January 1 of this year," Wagner said. "Montana's minimum wage law requires that the minimum wage amount be indexed to inflation so every year on the first of January we make that increase according to how much inflation has increased over the past year."

Though the minimum wage went up fifteen cents, Wagner says very few Montanan’s will actually see a change in their pay.

"We estimate that the number of Montanans impacted by the minimum wage increase this year is less than 4,000. Because the wage market is tight, many workers are already being paid above the state minimum wage."

Wagner says there was only one year where inflation didn’t drive Montana’s minimum wage up and that was in 2016. Wagner says that during the height of the last recession an estimate of less than 10,000 people received the minimum wage.

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