Missouri businesses will pay higher unemployment taxes next year in order to pay down a state debt to the federal government.
Missouri began borrowing from the federal government in 2008 to pay jobless benefits after an economic downturn drained the state's unemployment benefits trust fund. That debt has remained outstanding for several years.
Businesses are paying a surcharge of $42 per employee this year to help pay down that debt. The Missouri Chamber of Commerce and Industry says businesses will have to pay $63 per employee in 2014.
Missouri's minimum wage will rise by a dime to $7.35 an hour in 2013.
For the past several years, Missouri has followed the federal minimum wage of $7.25 an hour. That's because the federal rate was equal to or greater than the state's minimum, which is adjusted annually based on the cost of living.
But inflation has now pushed Missouri's minimum wage above the federal standard. The new wage is posted on the website of the state labor department.