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Florida's minimum wage is set to go up in January

The state's minimum wage will climb from $8.25 an hour to $8.46 an hour

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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – New Year's Day is just around the corner, and that means more money for some Floridians.

Starting Jan. 1, Florida's minimum wage will go up by 21 cents, bringing the current rate from $8.25 an hour up to $8.46 an hour, according to the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity.

The 2019 increase marks the biggest change in minimum wage since it rose by 36 cents in 2012, and it's the sixth largest increase since Florida adopted a state minimum wage in 2004.

But some argue that even with the increase, Florida is still below the national average.

Critics say $8.46 isn't going very far with other rising factors, including housing costs, 

Earlier this year, the Sulzbacher Center reported an increase in the number of homeless families (those with at least one adult and one child) coming into the shelter.

The president and CEO pointed to the rising housing costs in Jacksonville, with salaries and income not keeping pace.

Some have advocated Florida raise its minimum wage to $15 per hour, as other states have.

Amazon already plans to do this. Other large corporations are planning to follow suit.

The state is required to calculate an annual minimum wage, which is based on federal consumer data. It applies to all employees in the state who are covered by the federal minimum wage.

Employees who are not paid the minimum wage would have the right to sue their employer. 

About the Authors:

A Florida transplant with Midwest roots, Garrett Pelican is the digital executive producer for News4Jax.

Ashley Harding joined the Channel 4 news team in March 2013 and reports every weekday for The Morning Show.