New York, California gearing up for $15 minimum wage

April 05, 2016 - by: Tammy Binford 0 COMMENTS

On April 4, the governors of New York and California signed measures that will culminate in a $15 minimum wage phased in over the next few years.

Champions of the minimum wage increases say they are important to providing workers a living wage, but foes in both states predict job losses and business failures.

New York and California became the first states to pass a $15 minimum wage, but several cities around the country already have laws putting them on the road to a $15 minimum. The federal minimum wage is $7.25 an hour.

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New York Women’s Equality Act takes effect January 19

by Edward O. Sweeney

Several new laws that are part of New York’s Women’s Equality Act take effect on January 19, meaning employers need to understand the new protections related to equal pay, sexual harassment, and familial and pregnancy discrimination in the workplace.  Manager Balancing Out A Female And A Male Worker

One of the new laws amends New York state’s Labor Law § 194, commonly referred to as the Equal Pay Law. The law already requires employers to pay men and women equally for the same work unless they can show that the difference in pay is based on a seniority system, a merit system, a quantity or quality metric, or “any factor other than sex.” The new law replaces the “any factor other than sex” requirement with a “bona fide factor other than sex” requirement.

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Categories: HR Hero Alerts / New York

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End of 2015 marks beginning of New York’s fast-food wage increases

by Angelo D. Catalano

The first of a series of minimum wage increases for fast-food workers in New York is set to begin on December 31.  Counter Girl Serving

The increases survived a challenge from the National Restaurant Association when the New York Industrial Board of Appeals decided on December 9 that the state’s action to raise wages for fast-food employees was lawful. The restaurant organization, however, isn’t giving up and has vowed to take the issue to court, according to news reports.

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New York fast-food employers bracing for $15 minimum wage

July 24, 2015 - by: Tammy Binford 0 COMMENTS

by Tammy Binford

New York fast-food workers may be celebrating the likelihood of a $15-an-hour minimum wage phased in over the next few years, but others are questioning the justification offered for the raise.kitchen of a chinese restaurant

A three-member wage board appointed by New York Governor Andrew M. Cuomo recommended the new minimum wage for fast-food workers July 22. It won’t take effect without an order from the state’s acting labor commissioner, which is expected.

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New York tipped minimum cash wage to rise to $7.50 an hour

by Charles H. Kaplan

Tipped workers in New York will see the minimum cash wage rise to $7.50 an hour on December 31, 2015, following a February 24 order by New York State Acting Commissioner of Labor Mario Musolino.

The order will reduce the tip credit to a $1.50 deduction from New York’s minimum wage of $9 per hour, effective at the end of the year. Governor Andrew M. Cuomo calls the increase necessary to keep full-time tipped workers from living in poverty. However, many employers view the rise in the minimum cash wage as counterproductive.

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Changes to New York’s wage theft act bring good, bad news for employers

by Paul J. Sweeney

An amendment to New York’s Wage Theft Prevention Act (WTPA) removes a requirement that private-sector employers provide wage rate notices to current employees by February 1 of each year.

The WTPA requires private-sector employers to provide written wage rate notices to employees and imposes penalties for noncompliance. Until the change was signed into law on December 29, 2014, the written wage rate notices providing information on employees’ rates of pay or calculation of wages—as well as other wage- and benefit-related information—had to be issued by February 1 of each year.

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Rochester ban-the-box law to take effect November 18

by Edward O. Sweeney

Rochester, New York, will become the latest city to restrict employers’ ability to ask applicants about their criminal history when its ban-the-box ordinance takes effect November 18.

Since many employers are hesitant to hire applicants with criminal histories, states and cities have begun passing laws that restrict employers from including a check box on applications requiring applicants to disclose arrests and convictions.

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New York City law protects unpaid interns

by New York Employment Law Lettershutterstock_187208948

A new law that aims to protect unpaid interns in New York City from discrimination and harassment on the job will take effect June 15.

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New York City paid sick leave law begins April 1

by New York Employment Law Letter

New York City employers need to be ready for the city’s new Earned Sick Time Act by the April 1 effective date.

Beginning April 1, the law, passed last summer over the veto of then-Mayor Michael Bloomberg, requires private-sector employers with 20 or more employees in New York City to offer at least 40 hours of annual paid sick leave to each employee. Employers with fewer than 20 employees in the city will be required to offer at least 40 hours of unpaid sick leave to each employee per year.

As of October 1, 2015, private-sector employers with 15 or more employees will have to offer at least 40 hours of annual paid sick leave to each employee, and private-sector employers with fewer than 15 employees will be required to offer at least 40 hours of unpaid sick leave to each employee per year.

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Categories: New York

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New York law on unemployment taxes takes effect January 1

by Colin Leonard and James Rooney

A new law going into effect on January 1, 2014, will increase New York employers’ contributions to the state’s unemployment compensation program.

Earlier this year, legislation was enacted in response to the insolvency of the Unemployment Insurance Trust Fund and the state’s need to repay $3.5 billion borrowed from the federal government to cover increased costs during the recession.

One of the changes involves employer contributions based on the Federal Unemployment Tax Act (FUTA). Under the old law, the employer tax was based on the number of employees and the employer’s experience rating. The tax was assessed on the first $8,500 of each employee’s earnings. Beginning January 1, 2014, the tax will be assessed on the first $10,300 of each employee’s earnings, and the amount will gradually rise each year.

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