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Preview: 10.3.22 Advocacy Alert: NY to Increase Minimum Wage Again

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October 3, 2022

The New York State Department of Labor announced plans to raise the minimum wage in upstate to $14.20/hour, a one-dollar increase.  

The proposed increase will go through the formal rulemaking process. The state is accepting public comments through December 11th, which can be emailed to regulations@labor.ny.gov, though the BNP does not expect any amount of disapproving public comments to derail the proposal. The increase will take effect December 31. 

If the state proceeds with the increase, it would be the tenth consecutive year the state has increased the minimum wage. Under statute, annual increases are authorized to take place until the minimum wage reaches $15 in all regions of the state.  

The increase was recommended based on a statutorily required report conducted by the Division of Budget. The report correctly notes that “entry-level wages are rising above the minimum wage floor due to the fierce competition for workers.” 13.7% of upstate workers earned the minimum wage pre-pandemic; only 5.9% of upstate workers earn the minimum wage now. 

However, instead of acknowledging that market forces and competition for workers are already driving wage growth, the state concluded that wages must grow by government order, too.  

Farm Overtime Threshold Lowered 

In another Friday afternoon release, the Department of Labor also announced it would lower the overtime threshold for farm laborers from 60 hours to 40 hours per week. The change will be phased in gradually over a ten-year period. The increase was authorized by the 2019 Farm Laborers Fair Labor Practices Act. 

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