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Rochester

Cuomo Pushes for Minimum Wage Increase

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Rochester: Cuomo Pushes for Minimum Wage Increase
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Governor Cuomo is expected to once again push for raising the minimum wage in his third State of the State Address today.

The minimum wage in New York State is currently $7.25 an hour. A minimum wage employee who works 40 hours grosses $290 per week.

In some industries, like food service workers, it is less because of allowances for tips.

Cuomo supports raising the wage and there's talk he may even push for $10 an hour. An earlier proposal to raise the minimum wage to $8.50 per hour was declared dead back in May, but Cuomo is expected to push for raising the wage again during his speech.

The National Employment Law Project said the Great Recession saw widespread mid-wage job losses, the majority of jobs created during the economic recovery have been low-wage positions that pay $13.83 an hour or less.

Rochester Business Alliance President Sandy Parker said Governor Cuomo has the state on the right path, but in order to ease the way for employers to create more jobs that will be paying more than minimum wage, he needs to look at mandate relief, workers compensation costs and unemployment insurance costs that are currently preventing some companies from expanding.

Parker said, "I think adding a 17 percent cost to employers will end up hindering job growth at those entry level jobs, so the people who are going to get hurt are people that are in training positions or young people looking for part time jobs."

Massachusetts, Connecticut, Vermont and 15 other states have higher rates, and 10 states increased minimum wage at the start of the year.

In Washington State for example, the minimum wage is now $9.19.

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