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State’s Minimum Wage Likely To Rise By $1 An Hour

Upstate New York’s minimum wage is expected to increase by $1 an hour.

On Friday, the state Department of Labor announced that Commissioner Roberta Reardon issued an order calling for the minimum wage rate in counties outside of New York City, Long Island and Westchester to rise by $1 per hour, from $13.20 to $14.20, following a statutorily required economic analysis conducted by the New York State Division of the Budget. The Division’s analysis found evidence of pressure for wages to rise in the midst of a continued pandemic-driven labor shortage.

Currently, the minimum wage rate in New York City, Long Island, and Westchester County is $15 per hour, having reached that level following phased-in annual increases pursuant to statute.

“By raising the minimum wage incrementally, New York State is helping businesses adjust to the new rate, while giving low-wage workers the ability to better participate in our economy,” Reardon said. “Continuing with the multi-year plan to raise the minimum wage is in line with market standards and ensures that no worker is left behind.”

The commissioner’s order will be enacted through rulemaking and is subject to public comment before a final decision is made. The state Labor Department announced the start of the public comment period for New Yorkers to weigh in on the recommendation and invited New Yorkers to share feedback by e-mailing regulations@labor.ny.gov by Dec. 11. If accepted, the wage increase would take effect on Dec. 31.

An average of 200,000 New Yorkers in these upstate counties will benefit from this wage increase, 44% of which are full time workers and of those, nearly 25% are supporting children below age 18. In addition, this increase will help to close the gender pay gap, providing an estimated 110,000 women with greater financial stability.

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