In two years, the statewide minimum wage is due to increase to $15 an hour for businesses with more than 25 employees. But after acknowledging the high cost of living in Hayward beatthe East Bay, a number of Alameda County cities over the years have chosen to the quickly accelerate the timetable. On Tuesday night, Hayward is likely to finally join the group.

Hayward city staff is recommending a boost to its minimum wage – currently at $13.00 for large businesses, as mandated by the state – to $15.00 an hour by January 2021 for Hayward businesses with more than 25 employees.

Those with less than 25 employees or less would begin paying their workers $15 an hour starting in January 2022.

Hayward’s neighboring cities, however, have been far more pro-active in raising their minimum wage in recent years.

For example, Alameda’s minimum wage is slated to increase to $15 an hour in July for all employees. San Leandro will also reach $15 an hour in July. The same for Fremont, but only for large businesses.

Back in October, Hayward Councilmember Aisha Wahab, introduced a referral asking the city’s staff to study a proposal for increasing the minimum wage quicker than the state’s schedule.