New York lawmakers are moving ahead with a minimum wage hike in the state despite the economic effects caused by the coronavirus pandemic.
The hike is set to take effect on December 31 and will boost wages in different parts of the state between 70 cents and $1 an hour, according to reports.
The State Department defended the action, while noting some markets are leading the state’s recovery.
Business advocates and state Republicans, however, have called for a pause in the hike. They cited the devastation to local businesses during the pandemic.
“I think a better way that New York could make things work is stop this ridiculous regulation that we put on our small businesses,” said state Rep. Chris Tague (R). “You know, if our small businesses had an easier route to success, they’d be able to afford to pay their employees more money.”
The increase is part of a tiered schedule adopted in 2016 with the eventual goal of $15 per hour across the state.