Increase In Minimum Wage

By Kiersten Mathieu

July 22, 2010 Updated Jan 4, 2006 at 2:43 PM EST

It's because of a law that raises New York's minimum wage every year for 3 years.
One year ago, in January 2005, it climbed up to 6 dollars an hour.
Yesterday, January first 2006, it climbed another 75 cents, to 6 dollars 75 cents an hour.
And, one year from now, in January 2007, it goes up again to 7 dollars 15 cents.
Minimum wage workers are getting bigger paychecks in 2006, but that means some businesses are making less money.
Barnes Flowers in Binghamton pays 2 employees minimum wage.
Owner Linda Kerensky says paying the extra 75 cents an hour is not small change.
"We are a small business. When you try to have several different employees and when you have an increase in anything it does affect you and of course it does affect the consumers," says Linda Kerensky of Barnes Flowers.
Kerensky says her floral shop needs more business to curb this new cost.
Lori Wagner of Wagner's Bakery in Binghamton wants her baked goods to rise, but not her prices.
"It affects us a great deal. I already laid 1 person off as of officially today. I'm going to try my hardest not to raise my prices, but when they raise the minimum wage, everyone else raises their cost and either we're going to have to eat it or raise our prices," says Lori Wagner of Wagner's Bakery.
Wagner says she'll cut back the hours of her other minimum wage employees.
People who earn minimum wage are pleased with the increase.
"It's really great. I'm glad it went up. A lot of people work for minimum wage and it will be really helpful," says Deborah Lewis of the Dollar Store.
At the Quizno's in Johnson City, some employees are excited about the 75 cent increase.
But others says it's still not enough.
Like Heather Smith, who has 6 kids at home.
"It's the difference between 20 to 30 dollars a week for my childrens food, clothing, and already its hard trying to provide what little we can," says Smith.
Others appreciate the pay hike.
"Its really hard to pay for bills and groceries and that kind of thing. And making minimum wage at 6 dollars, I think with the increase it will make it a little better," says Cheryl Teabo of Quiznos.
A little better for employees, a little tougher for employers.
According to the Fiscal Policy Institute, there were more minimum wage jobs after the wage was raised last year.

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