Business Community Fighting Against NYC ‘Living Wage’ Bill

NEW YORK (1010 WINS) — Opponents took their fight to the steps of City Hall Wednesday to protest the “Living Wage” bill in front of New York City Council.

The bill, if enacted, would require any company receiving city contracts or subsidies to pay their workers a minimum of $10 per hour with benefits or $11.50 per hour without benefits. The federal minimum wage comparatively is $7.25 an hour.

1010 WINS’ Stan Brooks Reports From City Hall

Nancy Ploeger, President of the Manhattan Chamber of Commerce, branded the bill a job killer.

“In city after city, wherever wage mandates have been tried, the very people who are supposed to benefit are hurt the most,” she said.

However, Councilman Oliver Koppel says the fears of the business community are unfounded.

“This is not a threat to economic development. It is a real attempt to make legitimate, decent jobs available,” he said, stressing that the wage applied only where developers got heavy taxpayer subsidies.

Still, small business are not convinced and said the measure would discourage economic growth.

“What retailer in their right mind is going to agree to sign leases in a place where they have to pay their employees 50 percent more than the minimum wage and the people down the block,” Jack Friedman, of the Queens Chamber of Commerce, said.

While those in the business community ask City Council to give them a break, Koppel says the city is just trying to fight poverty.

“What we’re doing right now is we’re building projects where people get jobs that can’t support their families,” he said.

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Comments

One Comment

  1. Dale Auburn says:

    Instead of focusing on the wage, the City Council should force companies with CITY contracts to actually hire CITY residents instead of giving absolute preference to suburbanites.

  2. Howie Sprague says:

    “What retailer in their right mind is going to agree to sign leases in a place where they have to pay their employees 50 percent more than the minimum wage and the people down the block,” Jack Friedman, of the Queens Chamber of Commerce, said. Hey Jack, Here’s a news item for you: Minimum wage is $7.25 hr. $7.25 x 2 = $14.50. The story says that businesses would have to pay $10 hr. with benefits & $11.50 hr. without benefits. If a business can’t afford such a pathetically low wage then maybe they really can’t afford to be in business …

    1. Dale Auburn says:

      Here’s a math lesson: “x 2” (“times two”) is DOUBLE. 50% is HALF, not double.

      50% more than $7.25 is $7.25 + (50% of 7.25) = $7.25 + $3.63 = $10.87, which is just over halfway between $10 and $11.50.

  3. marx engels says:

    This action should be mainly applicable to big shots like Ratner and Larry Silverstein, not small outfits or so-called M / W / DBE firms. It should augment Local Law Prevailing Wage, and should be strictly Union.

  4. JGNY says:

    How will .50 cents fight poverty? The suffolk county legislature did the same thing 5 years ago, the result, employment in suffolk has been stagnant or dropped since the bills passing. As a contract holder and employer in suffolk, I can tell you that this bill, or the expense of it has caused the loss of at least 2 jobs in my office. After all, since I am forced to pay more per hour to my existing personnel, I fired 2 other employees to make up the difference. The answer is I work longer hours to net the same money. Who Won? Nobody. These political hacks think by pandering to the public for votes will improve the situation have NOT looked at the reason for 9% unemployement. They could care less as the key target audience of voters on Food stamps and welfare checks grows with every passing day.

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