Published in the July 24, 2014 Santa Maria Times. The minimum wage in California increased from $8 to $9 per hour on July 1, and will go to $10 on Jan. 1, 2016. The federal minimum wage remains at $7.25 per hour. A bill to increase it to $10.10 was defeated in April due to a filibuster by House Republicans. In the Santa Maria area, with its high concentration of jobs in the low-wage sectors of the economy — hospitality, fast food, retail and...