A continued push for an increase to the minimum wage

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ALBANY, NY (WENY) — While the state budget continues into it’s fourth week of overtime, some lawmakers are hoping to increase the minimum wage.

Gov. Kathy Hochul’s budget plan proposes indexing New York’s current minimum wage of $15. Some lawmakers argue the minimum wage should be increased and then indexed.

This week Gov. Hochul said she would support an increase of the minimum wage to $17.

“I put out there tying it to inflation but from the beginning have been open up to a conversation. I put out the talking points, I put out what I’m looking for and then we come to consensus,” Hochul said.

But some Democratic lawmakers who are hoping to get the minimum wage to $21.25 said the governor’s support is a step in the right direction to increasing the minimum wage but $17 is not enough.

“I think that it’s outrageous that we would be okay, that she would think that we would be okay with a minimum wage that would essentially not cover the basic necessities for New Yorkers over the next few years,” said Sen. Jessica Ramos (D-13th Senate District).

Some Republican lawmakers expressed concerns about the impact on the economy.

“The differential between the minimum wage here in New York and what it is in Pennsylvania. It’s, in my opinion, been an extreme disadvantage to businesses and employers here to operate,” said Sen. Tom O’Mara (R-Big Flats).

Lawmakers are expected to continue in their negotiations through the April 28 deadline of the most recent budget extender.

Gov. Hochul said it’s possible we could have a final budget by the end of this week. She also said she is close to an agreement with both houses on the minimum wage.


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