Minimum Wage Hike: Good for the Economy or Bad for Business?
1/24/2013 (Updated 6:49:49 PM)(Source: Jason Weinstein)
Included in Governor Cuomo's budget address - a call to raise the state's minimum wage.
"Because it's fair from $7.25 to $8.75 (an hour)," said Cuomo.
"There's an immediate impact when you increase the minimum wage because people have money in their pocket," said Lawrence Parham of Citizen Action.
But some Republican lawmakers oppose the increase, saying the rise could hurt small business.
"These people that are above minimum wage at 9, 10, 11 dollars an hour, suddenly they're very near the bottom. So now you've got to give a corresponding raise to ratchet them up to compression at that wage level. It can be very, very costly," said Assemblyman Clifford Crouch, R - Guilford.
"What I'm going to look to do is not just put up stiff opposition but put up alternative proposals," said State Senator Tom Libous, R-52nd District.
If opponents can't stop the hike, the changes they could negotiate include giving small businesses credits to help them transition and not indexing the minimum wage to increase automatically with inflation
"That will certainly be part of the debate. I would be surprised if indexing made it through," said Assemblywoman Donna Lupardo, D-Endwell.
"I'm not sure that the amount of the increase is something we can handle right now. I would think that our Republican colleagues would come up with some alternatives," said Libous.
Assemblywoman Donna Lupardo supports the minimum wage hike. Other supporters say the rise in wages will actually help small business.
"When individuals have money in their pocket, particularly when they're on the low end of the socio-economic earning scale, those individuals are the ones that mostly buy from small business owners," said Parham.
The Governor and Legislature face an April 1st deadline to pass a budget.
****In Binghamton, Jason Weinstein, Fox 40 HD News****
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