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Rising Living Wages


The County Board of Supervisors voted to establish a $17/hour living wage for all County contractors in October 2016! Living wage measures the gap between the minimum wage and the amount of money you need to meet a minimum standard of living. This will be phased in over 2.5 years, starting January 1 at $14/hour and gradually increase to $17/hour by mid-2019. The Board researched the issue and appointed Supervisors Carole Groom and Dave Pine to a Living Wage Ordinance Subcommittee. To further study this issue, the Supervisors convened a work group of 12 non-profit County contractors, one for-profit contractor, and a representative from the San Mateo Labor Council. The work group held 6 meetings over 3 months to discuss the components of a living wage ordinance, evaluate enacted ordinances throughout the State, examine best practices, and identify areas of concern. Based on the discussions by the work group, it was recommended that the Board of Supervisors consider adopting the 5-year living wage pilot program. This is great for health as people with higher incomes and more wealth live longer. Check out Healthy Economy data section on our website for more on wages and health by household size and neighborhoods across the county.