MOUNT VERNON, N.Y. – Mount Vernon residents say they're encouraged by the bill passed in the New York State Assembly that could increase minimum wage to $9 an hour.
The Assembly passed the bill 101-44; it now needs to be passed by the State Senate. If passed by the Senate, it will go into effect in January 2014. There would also be automatic increases in the wage, tied to inflation.
“I can’t remember the last time we saw minimum wage go up,” resident Yuri White said. “I think it’ll be good for the entire state to see workers getting some more money.”
In the past six years, minimum wage has only increased by 10 cents per hour, going from $7.15 to $7.25 an hour in 2009. Assembly member Amy Paulin (D-88) said that the pros outweigh the cons when it comes to the increased wages.
“We in the Assembly believe our counterparts in the Senate will realize the benefits of raising the minimum wage far outweigh the negatives,” she said. “You can see how other states have been positively impacted by the increase and how it helped economic growth.”
There are 19 states, including nearby Connecticut and Massachusetts, that have higher minimum wages than New York. An additional 10 states have already passed legislation that tie minimum wage to inflation.
Resident Will Glass said that he is impressed with the assembly members that went through the motions to pass the legislation.
“I’m happy we have people in government looking out for our wellbeing,” he said. “The fact that we will be prepared for inflation is a big step moving forward.”
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