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Minimum wage push for New York

Thursday, June 19 17:50:29

Advocates of a higher minimum wage, energised by victories in cities and states across the United States this year, are bracing for a last-minute push today in New York, where lawmakers could end the legislative season without a vote on the issue.

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, a Democrat, has backed the proposed increase to $8.50 from the current $7.25 an hour, but the bill has met heavy resistance in the state senate, where Republicans have a power sharing agreement with a breakaway group of Democrats.

Hundreds of fast-food restaurant workers descended on the state capital of Albany this week to lobby for the increase, but Republicans have said the change would hamper job growth.

The session officially ends today, but it can be extended.

A higher minimum wage has been a Democratic priority this year. President Barack Obama has pushed Congress to raise the federal minimum wages to $10.10 per hour from its current $7.25, though so far without success. (Reuters)