New York City’s comptroller, Scott Stringer, recently announced the results of a study that analyzed the hypothetical effects of a citywide $15 per hour minimum wage for food service workers. Bumping the minimum wage up from $8.75 to $15 would result in an astronomic boost of $1.3 billion in paychecks annually, according to the New York Daily News. Nearly 180,000 city-employed food service workers would be affected. His study covered all food service workers in the industry, not just those working for fast food companies.
“There’s no question. A higher minimum wage is one of the most effective steps that we can take to combat income inequality and move people toward the middle class,” Stringer said.
The study comes as Gov. Cuomo and other legislators are still in talks to raise the statewide minimum wage to a proposed rate $10.50 an hour. This week, fast food workers are testifying at a hearing in Albany — the first of four that will eventually determine the fate of low-income workers. However, a new survey that polled 900 fast food operators across the state reinforced the widespread opinion that a $15 wage hike would result in serious job cuts. Last month, Los Angeles became the largest city to raise the minimum wage to $15.