The measure sets the minimum for employees who get tips at half that. The current minimum wage for non-tipped employees is $8.73.
"I'm incredibly proud of Vermont today for being able to sign -- for sending me a minimum wage bill that gives hard-working Vermont families a fair wage at the end of the week," Gov. Peter Shumlin said.
Some cities have recently set minimum wages even higher with Richmond, Calif., adopting $13 an hour, and Seattle $15, which would take effect over the next seven years. Chicago is considering a $15 minimum hourly rate.
In May, Maryland approved an increase to $10.10 an hour by 2018, while Michigan raised its minimum to $9.25.
Notable deaths of 2014 [PHOTOS]
Cyclist struck and dragged underneath car