Under a budget deal reached in Albany on Monday, the state's minimum wage would rise to $9 an hour from $7.25 an hour by the beginning of 2016, going to $8 next year and $8.75 in 2015. That's the same increase President Barack Obama called for in his State of the Union Address, but it's missing one key component: While Obama's proposed federal minimum wage hike would be pegged to inflation to automatically raise every year, New York's remains static after it kicks in. And since the last time the state raised its minimum wage was four years ago, that could be a problem for people who make it. Also, as Huffington Post points out, $9 is still pretty far from a living wage, even for single New Yorkers. But it's also a 24 percent improvement over the status quo, so it's got that going for it.
Photo: Orest Ladyzhynsky