Governor Cuomo’s Proposal For Minimum Wage Control

The Governor offers an alternative to letting local governments set their own minimum wage freely.

Governor Andrew Cuomo, fresh off clinching a reelction endorsement from the left-leaning Working Families Party, reiterated on Sunday his opposition to communities setting their own minimum wage freely, but signaled there might be room for adjustment.

In February, Cuomo said it would be “chaotic” to let local governments set their own minimum wage. “We are also one state and we don’t want to cannibalize ourselves,” he said.

But on Sunday, Cuomo detailed a proposal that would raise the state’s minimum wage to $10.10 an hour while allowing local governments to raise it up to 30 percent higher than the statewide wage.

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“We have to recognize the difference in the cost of living in different markets,” Cuomo told reporters in Manhattan, according to the Journal News. “I would allow localities within a state-prescribed formula to adjust a local wage—but not that the locality gets to set the rate wherever they want. I’m against that.”

Cuomo also said he recognized the clashing views between the Democrats and Republicans, but he said he supports the Democrats’ plan to increase the New York minimum wage, which is currently $8 and is set to rise to $9 at the end of 2015.

State Democratic lawmakers in Westchester have also been campaigning for local flexibility to increase the minimum wage, led by Senate Democratic Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins (D-Yonkers).

“We stand ready to provide 27 votes for raising the minimum wage quicker… for all low wage workers,” she said in a press release last year.

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