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New York Is the Latest State to Make Moves on a $15 Minimum Wage

Under a budget deal struck Thursday, the minimum wage in NYC will be $15 by the end of 2018—and the rest of the state will eventually follow suit.

by Helen Donahue
Apr 1 2016, 4:35pm

Photo by Julian Master.

Read: How Liberals Finally Started Winning the Minimum Wage Fight

Governor Andrew Cuomo and state legislators have agreed on a budget that will bring New York City's minimum wage to $15 before 2019, with the rest of the state slowly rising as well over the coming years, the New York Timesreports.

NYC small businesses—those with ten or fewer employees—get an extra year to raise wages from $9 to $15.

Upstate, the wage hike will roll out more gradually, aiming to hit $12.50 by the end of 2020. Cuomo expects it to continue towards $15, with state labor and budget analysts keeping tabs to make sure the raise isn't causing economic harm.

The budget comes just a few hours after the California legislature approved a historic statewide plan to bring minimum wage to $15 by 2022—and four years after fast-food workers in NYC started the Fight for $15. That nationwide push to raise wages and create awareness around minimum wage workers and working conditions has been injected into the presidential campaign, with Democratic insurgent Bernie Sanders often hitting the subject at his rallies.

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