Minimum wage and living wage

Testimony Presented to the New York City Council Committee on Civil Service and Labor

February 27, 2014. In testimony presented before the New York City Council Civil Service and Labor Committee, FPI’s James Parrott summarized several employment, wage and cost of living trends affecting low-wage workers in New York City. He noted that 37 percent of all wage-earners in the city are paid less than $15 an hour, and that half of all black and Latino workers are low-wage by this measure. Parrott discussed several groups of low-wage workers and suggested policy steps… (read more)

Why New York State Should Let Cities and Counties Enact Higher Local Minimum Wages

February 14, 2014. While New York’s economy is gradually recovering, far too many workers still earn very low wages. Pay for the typical New Yorker has not kept up with inflation, and the majority of new jobs being created in New York and nationally are in low paying fields. As communities in New York struggle with these serious economic challenges, other states have empowered localities to respond by adopting higher local minimum wages. From California to Maryland, growing numbers of… (read more)

The Taxpayer Costs of Low-Wage Fast Food Jobs in New York State

October 16, 2013. Fast food jobs are by far the biggest source of job growth in New York State and New York City in this recovery and over the past decade. But, with a median hourly pay of only $8.90 an hour in NYC, this growth in fast food jobs is one of the reasons that poverty has risen sharply during the recovery.

NYC has a record number of working poor—one out of every 10 workers in NYC works,… (read more)

Walmart and other large, low-wage employers will benefit financially from New York’s new Minimum Wage Reimbursement Credit.

April 5, 2013. Unless disclosure requirements are clarified, we’ll probably never know exactly how much Walmart and other large, low-wage employers receive in government subsidies under New York’s new Minimum Wage Reimbursement Credit (MWRC). But based on the best data available, we estimate that Walmart is likely to receive MWRC subsidies of between $53 million and $85 million over the next five years.

New York’s new MWRC will provide employers a tax credit for the hours worked by students between… (read more)

The Many Problems with New York’s Proposed Minimum Wage Reimbursement Credit

March 25, 2013. This was to have been the year New York caught up with the 19 other states and the District of Columbia with a minimum wage above the $7.25 an hour federal level. Minimum wage legislation that passed the Assembly also would have indexed the minimum wage in future years—as 10 other states do—so that inflation would not steadily erode its purchasing power. However, the agreement reached over the weekend in Albany falls far short. It increases the… (read more)

$9 with indexing adds hundreds of millions of dollars more in consumer spending and more jobs

March 13, 2013. A report by the National Employment Law Project and the Fiscal Policy Institute shows the dangers of watering down the $9.00 plus indexing minimum wage proposal, which has the backing of most New Yorkers and majorities in both the Senate and the Assembly.  The report details the greater benefits for workers and the state economy from an increase to $9.00 an hour with indexing compared to the proposal for an $8.75 an hour increase without indexing:… (read more)

Raising New York’s Minimum Wage: The Economic Benefits and Demographic Impact of Increasing New York’s Minimum Wage to $8.75 per Hour

January 28, 2013. A minimum wage increase included in Governor Cuomo’s budget proposal, released last Tuesday, would raise the paychecks of over 1.5 million low-paid New Yorkers, according to a new report from the Fiscal Policy Institute and the National Employment Law Project. The Governor’s proposal would raise the state’s minimum wage from $7.25 to $8.75 per hour on July 1, 2013, and the increased wages would generate more than $1 billion in new consumer spending, supporting the creation… (read more)

A federal minimum wage hike would help 1.5 million New York workers and our economy

August 14, 2012. One of the best ways to speed up economic growth is to give a lift to the wages of the lowest paid workers.

Legislation awaits action now in Washington, D.C., that would boost the federal minimum wage in three 85 cent steps from $7.25 to $9.80 an hour. According to new estimates released today by the Economic Policy Institute (EPI), this proposal would benefit 1.5 million New York workers, raising their pay by… (read more)

Minimum wage in the news, April-May 2012

May 29, 2012. FPI’s analysis and commentary on the minimum wage issue has been highlighted in a number of recent news stories:

  • Report: 880,000 Workers In NY Would Benefit From Higher Minimum Wage – an article by Joseph Spector, Gannett News Service, May 24, 2012.
  • Wage Bill Would Benefit Bronx More than Other Counties, Report Says – an article by Patrick Wall, DNAinfo.com, May 24, 2012.
  • The minimum wage, tax cuts, and

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What is the county-by-county impact of raising New York’s minimum wage to $8.50 an hour?

May 24, 2012. This new brief shows that among several of the state’s larger upstate counties, the share of workers who would benefit directly is well above the statewide average – 10.1 percent of all resident workers. In Broome County 12.6 percent of workers would benefit, in Oneida 12.5 percent, Erie County 11.4 percent, Monroe 11.1 percent and Onondaga 10.9 percent. Downstate, 352,000 New York City workers would benefit directly, as would 126,500 Long Island workers and 72,500 workers… (read more)