Items tagged with 'minimum wage'

Getting some sense of New York's upcoming minimum wage increases

George Washington one dollar bill

As you know, New York State's minimum wage -- or, really, its minimum wages -- are set for large increases over the next handful of years. Areas downstate will eventually hit $15 an hour, and upstate will rise to $12.50, with continued increases planned after that.

Last year during the debate about whether the state should take this path, we tried to get some sense of the proposed increase by comparing the minimum wage to the wages of everyone else in the state. And we did this by region, because making $15 an hour in New York City isn't necessarily the same as making $15 an hour in Utica.

So now that the increases are set, we thought we'd run that comparison again. And we added a new one -- using the cost of housing as a yard stick.

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Cuomo moving to raise minimum wage for state employees to $15 per hour

andrew cuomo state employee 15 per hour screengrab

The Cuomo admin announced Tuesday that Andrew Cuomo is moving to unilaterally set a $15 minimum wage for state employees.

The increase would be phased in over the next few years, rising to $15 in New York City by the end of 2018, and by 2021 in the rest of the state. It's projected the increase would affect approximately 10,000 state employees -- 9,000 of them outside New York City.

The governor publicly announced the plan at a Fight for 15 rally in New York City. "This is about basic fairness and basic justice," he said of the push to raise the minimum wage both in New York State and across the country. "We're going to lead the way. The nation's going to watch us."

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A $15 minimum wage, Hillary Clinton, and Donald Trump

Donald Trump at ESP gun rights rally 2014 April 1

Donald Trump at the ESP last year.

A few interesting bits from recent polls of New York State:

Support for $15-an-hour minimum wage
A Quinnipiac poll out last week reported that respondents supported "raising the state's minimum wage to $15.00 an hour over the next several years" 62-35. Democrats and independents were both titled toward the supporting side (85 and 59 percent supporting), and Republicans were titled to toward the oppose side (65 percent opposing). Upstate was the region with lowest percentage of supporters -- 50 percent -- compared to 77 percent in NYC and 61 in the NYC suburbs. (That's probably not surprising given how much of a difference there is in median wages between upstate and downstate.)

The Q poll was conducted September 10-15 and has a margin of error of +/- 2.7 percentage points.

Hillary and The Donald
The Siena poll out today reports that, for the first time in the poll's history, more respondents had an unfavorable opinion of Hillary Clinton than a favorable one. The former New York US Senator's favorable/unfavorable split was 46-51. The splits among Democrats (71/24) and Republicans (13/86) were what you'd expect. But the split among independents was 32 percent favorable / 65 percent unfavorable.

Clinton's still the overwhelming favorite among Democratic respondents for the presidential nomination -- 45 percent said they'd vote for her.

The poll also asking favorable/unfavorable question about Donald Trump, and the split was 32/58. But among Republican respondents, Trump led the field for the Republican nomination, with 34 percent saying they'd vote for him in a primary.

Oh, and about George Pataki -- his favorable/unfavorable split was 32/58, which was roughly the same for Democrats, Republicans, and independents. Just three percent of Republican respondents said they'd vote for the former New York governor in a Republican presidential primary.

The Siena Poll was conducted September 14-17 and has a +/- 4 percent point margin of error (+/-5 for Democrats, +/-6.7 for Republicans).

Getting some sense of a $15-per-hour minimum wage

George Washington 1 dollar bill closeup

When Andrew Cuomo recently proposed raising the state's minimum wage for all industries to $15, it created a big stir -- in large part because that's a big jump from the state's current minimum wage of $8.75 (soon to be $9). And it highlights the question: What is the "right" minimum wage?

Here's one way of thinking about that question for different parts of New York State...

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Poll: strong support for minimum wage increase

8 dollars 50 cents

$8.50

A large majority of New Yorkers support raising the state's minimum wage from $7.25 to $8.50 per hour, according to the Siena poll out today. Of the people polled, support for the increase ran 78-17. The group registering the lowest support for the increase was Republicans -- and even among that group, 58 percent support it.

A few other interesting bits from today's poll:

+ One of Andrew Cuomo's strategies since becoming governor has appeared to be finding ways to allow the legislature to look good (while still doing what he wants it to do). It seems to be working: the number of people saying they have a "favorable" opinion of the Assembly and Senate are at "highest ever" levels* -- in the upper 40s.

+ The Occupy Wall Street movement registered its lowest favorability so far -- 38/52 favorable/unfavorable. The Tea Party's favorable/unfavorable: 38/58.

+ If the presidential election was now: Obama 57 | Romney 37.

+ The percent of people who said "don't know" or have "no opinion" of Kirsten Gillibrand is 25 percent -- the same as it was back in January 2011. We suspect this is roughly the same percentage of people who would feel open about admitting they don't follow politics or government at all. Chuck Schumer's don't know/no opinion: 9. See also: Chuck who?

+ KG still easily beats any of the potential Republicans in a hypothetical matchup for the US Senate.

+ The percent of people who agreed that New York State is on the "right track": 55 percent, a "highest ever" level.

* "Trends reflect questions asked at least twice since the first Siena College Poll in February 2005."

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