Minimum wage hike, straw ban, leave tax: New laws go into effect Monday in DC

The minimum wage goes up; the ban on plastic straws gets some teeth; and a new tax is levied on businesses Monday as new laws go into effect in the District.

On Monday, July 1, the minimum wage in D.C. goes up from $13.25 to $14 as part of the Fair Shot Minimum Wage Act of 2016. The wage will go up to $15 on July 1, 2020, then after that, go up in proportion with increases in the Consumer Price Index.

Meanwhile, technically the ban on plastic straws started Jan. 1, but there haven’t been any real penalties for businesses that have been breaking the rules; they’ve just been given warnings from the city.

Starting Monday, however, that’s changing. D.C.’s Department of Energy and Environment will be able to officially warn and fine businesses that provide single-use plastic straws anywhere from $100 to $800 for repeat offenders.

It’s part of the District’s effort to divert 80% of its waste from landfills by 2032.

Also Monday, D.C. will begin collecting taxes from businesses in order to administer the Universal Paid Leave Amendment Act of 2016.

The law will provide up to eight weeks of parental leave to bond with a new child; six weeks of family leave to care for an ill family member with a serious health condition; and two weeks of medical leave to care for one’s own serious health condition. The benefits begin July 1 of next year.

WTOP’s Nick Iannelli contributed to this report.