With comments offered yesterday, Governor Cuomo has reaffirmed his “conceptual” support for a hike in New York’s minimum wage and so the “Albany Dance” of negotiations presumably begins. Throughout this debate, NFIB has remained committed to our members and the needs of New York’s small businesses and will remain so.
Some have recently argued that raising the minimum wage is imperative for ethical or moral reasons. I find that fascinating considering holding employers to strict liability standards, such as the scaffold law does or painting all employers as blatant law breakers like the Wage Theft Prevention Act has, has not been rightfully characterized as morally inept.
If a hike in wages ultimately is linked to tax credits for hiring, shouldn’t lawmakers first consider why small businesses are not hiring in the first place? New York’s business owners have been clamoring for serious reform to our unemployment insurance and workers compensation laws for years. These and other stifling costs are the barriers to serious and significant job creation in this state.
I continue to be buoyed by the resolve of Senate Majority Leader Skelos as he continues to resist this effort, and remain optimistic that he and his conference will stay the course. While the Governor’s comments do not put the full force of his pulpit behind an increase, he does indicate that he is listening and considering it. My hope is that he will consider this:
Mandating a wage hike without dealing with these issues will cement New York’s standing at the bottom in business costs, job creation and continue our dubious place as the nations most anti-business state.