Orange County Chamber Opposes Governor’s Proposal to Increase Minimum Wage

While supporting “reasonable wage boosts,” the Orange County Chamber of Commerce “strongly opposes” Governor Cuomo’s proposal to increase the minimum wage from $9 to $15. The Chamber Board of Directors overwhelmingly approved a resolution to that effect at a meeting yesterday.

The position was taken after a survey of Chamber members revealed that 52% of respondents are opposed to increasing the minimum wage and only 29% are in favor. “The proposal to exponentially raise New York State’s minimum wage will have an adverse impact on Orange County businesses, and will likely result in many businesses being forced to close or leave the state,” says the resolution.

If the $15 minimum wage went into effect, it is estimated that 18,000 jobs would be lost in the lower Hudson Valley region and at least 200,000 across the state (report from the American Action Forum and Empire Center). “The proposed mandate will also put New York at a competitive disadvantage when trying to attract new businesses to the state,” according to the resolution.

As part of its opposition to the minimum wage, the Chamber will join, a coalition of 46 business organizations founded by the Business Council of NYS, Unshackle Upstate and the Rockland Business Association, among others.

“The Chamber’s Government Affairs Committee spent a great deal of time investigating all aspects of this issue,” said Chamber President Lynn Allen Cione, “and concluded that, as an organization that advocates on behalf of the business community, we cannot support the Governor’s proposal.”

The Orange Chamber is resolute in providing the best support to members, advocating on behalf of business-friendly legislation.