Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver declared in early January that raising the minimum wage was his top legislative priority. Since then, he has presented the issue as a choice between right and wrong.
"I think when push comes to shove, it’s a moral issue," Silver said.
despite his considerable push, it's unclear if the proposal to raise
the state's minimum wage from $7.25 to $8.50 has enough support to pass
both houses and be signed into law.
"I'm just telling you that we will not pass the speaker's bill," said Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos.
While Republicans call an increase a job killer, Democrats say the opposite is true.
supports that over the past 15 years, higher wages do not result in job
losses, even for minimum wage increases during the weak economic
periods," Assemblyman Keith Wright said.
Polls show New Yorkers favor an increase but the governor has not committed to pushing for its passage.
had conversations with the governor as recently as yesterday and I
think if you ask him today, you'll find that he is very supportive,"
But in a statement late Tuesday, the governor's
spokesman said, "The governor supports raising the minimum wage, as we
have made clear repeatedly. Unfortunately, we do not believe there will
be an agreement this session, as we have also said repeatedly."
Jeff Klein of the four-member Independent Democratic conference is the
Senate sponsor. He says his conference, being separate from the other
Democrats, could help the bill's chances.
"Well, I certainly hope
that is the case. That is the reason picked up the bill. Because I think
it's an important issue and I want to make sure it gets done before the
end of session," Klein said.
There had been some discussion about
the governor issuing an executive order to raise the minimum wage, but
administration officials now say it must be done legislatively.
ALL FOUR OSWEGO COUNTY ASSEMBLY PERSONS VOTED NO TO SUPPORTING OSWEGO COUNTY WORKERS.