Minimum Wage Ordinance



1) Annual Minimum Wage Increase

A Small Business is one with 55 or fewer employees working within the geographic boundaries of the City of Emeryville. A Large Business is one with 56 or more employees working within the geographic boundaries of Emeryville.

 The wage and escalation schedule is summarized in the following table:  

      For Regulations, FAQ's, Posters, Notices Click Here

 Effective Date ≤55 Employees 56+ Employees
 July 2, 2015 $12.25 $14.44
 July 1, 2016 $13.00 $14.82 (CPI)
 July 1, 2017 $14.00 $15.20 (CPI)
 July 1, 2018 $15.00 $15.69 (CPI)

July 1-9, 2019*
July 10, 2019
July 1, 2019


$15.00 (only for small independent restaurants)                                         
$16.30 (CPI) (only for small independent restaurants)
$16.30 (CPI) (all small and large businesses)

 July 1, 2020 $16.84(CPI) (all businesses)
July 1, 2021 $17.13 (CPI) (all businesses)
July 1, 2022 $17.68 (CPI) (all businesses)
July 1, 2023$18.67 (CPI) (all businesses)

*2019 Minimum Wage background:
 Updated 8/2/2019 


Updated 7/24/2019
  The City Council officially repealed the Amendment to the Minimum Wage Ordinance at its July 23rd meeting. Therefore, all businesses are required to pay the minimum wage rate of $16.30 per hour this year.  Posters and Notices will be available soon.
  Updated 7/9/2019
 Minimum Wage requirement now for all businesses is $16.30 (including small independent restaurants). Posters and Notices will be available in the next couple of weeks.
  Updated 6/27/2019

“The MWO Amendment, which provides that the minimum wage rate is $15.00 per hour for businesses meeting the ordinance’s definition of “Small Independent Restaurant”, will be in effect until the City Council approves the certification of the results of the referendum petition.  Once the certification is accepted by the City Council, the MWO Amendment is suspended and the minimum wage rate will be $16.30 per hour for all businesses.
 Certification of the results occurs at a City Council Meeting after the Registrar of Voters has completed their examination of the petition.  This could happen as early as July 9th (the next City Council meeting) or at a later City Council meeting.  Staff is unable to predict when we will receive the information from the Registrar of Voters.  The City’s website will be updated as soon as the results are received from the Registrar of Voters.”

Subject: Minimum Wage Ordinance Amendment, Referendum Petition

This is to update the community about a Referendum Petition that was submitted to the Emeryville City Clerk on June 25, 2019 regarding the recent amendments to the City’s Minimum Wage Ordinance (MWO). The Petition has been reviewed and found to be sufficient, and contains the minimum number of signatures required. The City Clerk submitted it to the Alameda County Registrar of Voters (ROV) this afternoon. The ROV must now check and certify the validity of the signatures. If the ROV confirms that the appropriate number of signatures are from registered voters in Emeryville, then the MWO amendment must be brought back to the City Council. What actions the City Council must consider are described in detail below. Essentially, the Council has two options: repeal the MWO amendment entirely or place the matter before the voters at an election. If the matter is placed before the voters at an election, the amendment is not in effect pending the outcome of the election. The City will notify the public if and when the City Council meeting including this matter is scheduled.


On May 29, 2019, the City Council adopted an amendment to the City’s Minimum Wage Ordinance [Emeryville Municipal Code (EMC) Title 5 Chapter 37] to add a definition of “Small Independent Restaurants” and establish a different minimum wage of $15 per hour for fiscal year 2019-2020 for those Small Independent Restaurants. The amendment provided that the minimum wage for Small Independent Restaurants would gradually increase over the next eight years, until 2027 when the minimum wage for all businesses would be the same.

Subsequent to that action, the City Council was informed that a referendum may be filed in an attempt to overturn the decision that approved the amendment. On June 25, 2019, a referendum petition was submitted to the City.

Effect of the Referendum Petition:

According to the State Elections Code, if the petition is certified to have the sufficient number of signatures, the effective date of the ordinance that is the subject of the referendum (the MWO Amendment) is suspended. While the MWO Amendment is suspended, the provisions of the Minimum Wage Ordinance remain as they were pre-amendment, specifically, the minimum wage rate for all businesses, whether small (55 or less employees) or large (56 or more employees) will be $16.30 per hour beginning July 1, 2019.

2) Paid Sick Leave

Update as of January 1, 2024

On January 1, 2024, Senate Bill (SB) 616 goes into effect and expands paid sick leave (“PSL”) for almost all California employers and employees. SB 616 amends Labor Code sections 245.5, 246, and 246.5, and increases the minimum required amount of PSL for California employers to 40 hours or 5 days, whichever is more (e.g., if an employee works 10‑hour days, the employee will be entitled to 5 days, or 50 hours of PSL). However, local ordinances that requires a higher amount of PSL must be adhered to if it more favorable to the employee. Details of the exceptions are addressed in the FAQ document here and on the state Department of Labor Standards Labor Enforcement website.

Local Ordinance Background

On July 1, 2015, AB 1522 went into effect requiring that all Employers in the State of California provide Paid Sick Leave to both full-time and part-time Employees. The City’s ordinance includes additional Paid Sick Leave benefits beyond the State requirements. Emeryville’s ordinance requires Paid Sick Leave for full-time, part-time and temporary Employees and includes the following:

  • Minimum of 48 Paid Sick Leave hours accruable for Employees of small businesses (55 or fewer Employees within Emeryville city limits) and 72 hours for Employees of Large Businesses (56 or more within Emeryville city limits).
  • In each year of employment, an Employee may use up to the total number of Paid Sick Leave hours accrued allowed by employer but subject to the minimum number of accruable Paid Sick Leave hours, as described above.
  • AB 1522 allows an Employee to use Paid Sick Leave to provide care for a family member. The Emeryville ordinance broadens the definition of “family member” to include a designated individual (if Employee has no spouse or registered domestic partner) for whom an Employee can use Paid Sick Leave to provide care. In addition, the Employee may use Paid Sick Leave to provide care for a guide dog, signal dog, or service dog of the Employee, Employee’s family member, or the person designated by the Employee.

3) Hospitality Service Charges

Emeryville’s new ordinance also requires that Hospitality Employers who collect service charges from customers must pay the entirety of those charges to the Hospitality Workers who performed those services for which the charge was collected. Examples of activities that could fall under a “service charge” are: delivering food or beverage to a hotel room, catering duties at banquets, or carrying luggage to room for hotel guests.