Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, D-Manhattan, said today that he will seek to increase the minimum wage to $9 an hour a year earlier than in current law.
The minimum wage is increasing to $8 on Jan. 1 and to $9 at the end of 2015. Silver wants it to get to $9 an hour by Dec. 31, 2014.
He also renewed his push to tie future increases to the rate of inflation—which has been rejected by Senate Republicans.
“New York’s hardworking men and women are struggling, and they cannot afford to wait two more years for a decent raise,” Silver said in a statement. “Poverty is not a fair reward for those who work a full-time job. We must do more to ensure that those who work hard for a living are able to make ends meet. Speeding up the implementation of the higher minimum wage is the right thing to do.”
The Assembly passed what Silver is again proposing, but it wasn’t backed by Senate Republicans, who share control with the four-member Independent Democratic Conference.
Silver said that if the federal minimum wage kept up with inflation, workers would be making more than $10 an hour, saying that California recently increased its minimum wage to $10 an hour.
New York is one of 13 states to increase its minimum wage on Jan. 1.
The other states are Arizona ($7.90), Colorado ($8), Connecticut ($8.70), Florida ($7.93), Missouri ($7.50), Montana ($7.90), New Jersey ($8.25), Ohio ($7.95), Rhode Island ($8), and Vermont ($8.73).