LANHAM, Md. (WNEW) — Montgomery County’s minimum wage increases Wednesday to $8.40, the first step in a plan to raise it to $11.50 by 2017.

The current state and federal minimum is just $7.25, though Maryland plans to increase the state minimum to $10.10 by 2018.

Next year, the county’s wage will go up to $9.55, then increase again to $10.75 in 2016.

For full-time minimum wage workers, the uptick will result in $2,400 more in gross pay per year.

“The minimum wage of $1.60 per hour in 1968 would be $10.86 today-when adjusted for inflation,” said County Councilmember Nancy Floreen, who chairs the Planning, Housing and Economic Development Committee. “There is no question about it-we are long overdue for a more equitable minimum wage.”