Minimum wage in New Jersey to increase to $11 on Jan. 1

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The minimum wage will increase to $11 per hour in New Jersey come Jan. 1.

Minimum wage increased from $8.85 per hour to $10 per hour in July – part of an effort to eventually make minimum wage in the Garden State $15 per hour.

And while some say that increasing pay for minimum wage workers is a good thing, the owners of some small businesses say that it will have a direct impact on their bottom line.

Tyler Dahl owns The Cubby Hole in downtown Moorestown. He says that he knows hard work and expects the same from his employees.

“I spend a lot of time there and most of our conversations at home revolve around that tiny restaurant,” Dahl says.

Dahl says that his employees already make over minimum wage, so the dollar increase coming Jan. 1 won't affect him too much. But he says he's able to do that by cutting costs elsewhere.

"I roll up my sleeves and wash dishes for two scheduled shifts every week and that's just the minimum,” he says. “On top of that I’m a line cook four days a week and I’m in the building basically every day handling hot food, burning myself, all the things that come with working in a restaurant"

Dahl says that while the wage hike may not impact him now, future hikes could cause him to scale back on employees or make other changes.

“The first thing that pops up is raising menu prices and I’m not comfortable and I don't like that,” he says. “I know what someone else's menu looks like and I know right away, even if it's 10 cents, I notice and I do question what happened. What's going on to drive their menu prices up?”

The minimum wage will increase $1 at the beginning of every year from now until 2024.

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