$15 minimum wage to cost NY taxpayers $1B+ over next 3 years


Cliff Notes Version: Minimum wage hikes will result in additional taxpayer funded Medicaid payments of $44 million in FY 2017; $255 million in FY 2018; $579 million in FY 2019; and $838 million in FY 2020. In fairness, NY’s annual budget is more than $150B, but $1B is still a lot of money.

Minimum wage makes me very angry.

Just hire more illegal immigrants off the books for below minimum wage. Problem solved!

how will higher wages cost taxpayers money? actually will save taxpayers

higher wages = higher tax revenue


Am I the only one who doesn’t mind?

I just can’t comprehend outlawing work below any level of productivity. “Hey Johnie, I’ll pay you ten bucks an hour to be my gopher while I work on engines.” Johnie responds, “Sorry, I could use the money and experience, but the government won’t allow it.”

I dont, im fine with paying slightly higher taxes to help people in my city get slightly closer to a living wage. Im more annoyed with them raising MTA rates (even though I still dont mind that much) just so Cuomo can break more promises and take more money from them for whatever he wants

What I know is that I see homeless people all over the place sitting on their asses. The other day some guy was spread eagle on the subway bench stinking or urine and causing all paying customers to evacuate the area. Why is there no system to have these guys do some labor, like cleaning trash, in return for basic food and shelter? It would help them and help me. Why create an arbitrary cost barrier that distorts the labor market and prevents people at the bottom from reclaiming their dignity? Look, I would pay 10 cents more per subway ride to not have homeless people spread eagle on the train smelling of urine and to have a clean station.

By the way, don’t expect any sensible MTA cost reform any time soon, such as distance based fares or even train schedule signs. Not when there is a huge labor organization that blocks any improvement unless it is bundled with a huge pay hike for them.

Some people just ain’t worth $15/hr… giving them that just hurts the rest of us. Price floors reduce demand and create oversupply.

Who are you to decide what are other people worth?

Don’t confuse people who work tough jobs for peanuts with the homeless charlatans

Agree MTA sucks big time

If they were worth $15, why do laws need to be passed to make sure they get paid at least that much?

See…because they are worth that much. That’s why the law is passed!

I don’t get the sentiment of people being worth X dollars. It is jobs, not people. Some jobs are worth $15 an hour, some jobs are worth $10 an hour. If you put a price floor, no one will do the $10 jobs. Minimum wage creates zero jobs, other than bureaucratic positions to manage the law. It will not create more $15 jobs, but instead, eliminate all $10 jobs.

ohai to your earlier point its clearly mental illness that needs to be addressed. That went away along time ago and we really do need a system to address those people. Not the crusty punks though, those people just need to go back to their parents in Connecticut.

to your second point not true at all, its not like mcdonalds is going to close their stores they will raise their pay. Those stores will still make money, just slightly less. In the publicly traded eara apparently lower margins is a cardinal sin that shows your business is dead as opposed to slightly adjusting how profits are shared

Or they will just make machines to take orders, like in Norway. I work near what is possibly the most crowded CVS in the city. There are 5-10 automated check out machines there, rather than human clerks. Labor cost crowd out is real. There is some slippage to what I said above. In the short run, McDonalds will bump the $12 people to $15 people. However, in the long run, they will also employ fewer people. The minimum wage takes away from the $10 or $12 people and gives to the $15 people.

I appreciate the point about mental illness. Many homeless in the city are not mentally healthy. However, I don’t think it is correct to say that mental illness is the only cost of homelessness, nor is it correct to say that no desperate people would happily work for below minimum wage if it was possible.

I am not saying no one gains from minimum wage - some people obviously do. However, there is not real productivity increase and those gains are just redistributed from others, and the system becomes less efficient.

Partially true, they’ll replace the counter people with self ordering kiosks and then raise the pay for the people who are left. Net result might be slightly higher payroll costs, some of the existing staff with higher pay, and some of the existing staff with no jobs. I’m sure minimum wage hike supporters will argue that that was going to happen eventually anyway, and there’s likely some truth to that, but it would also be reasonable to assume that the first employees that will be targeted for replacement are the ones in high minimum wage locations.

I agree with you both and certainly I have seen some of those new ordering machines pop up in my local mcdonalds however it seems 80% of the customers refuse to use them or they are always down. I can see some job losses coming for certain industries and i dont claim to believe that a 15 dollar minumum wage is a golden goose solution to all of our problems, just that it may help an we might as well try it. Some say the definition of insanity is trying the same thing over and over again and expecting different results, might as well shake things up and see what happens imo. To your point about minimum wage just being a redistribution, I am fine with that. I live pretty comfortably and can certainly afford to pay a bit more to help others, I understand however not everyone shares that belief

as for your additional point about mental illness ohai i certainly agree with you on that, there are some people who are not mentally ill and may be addicted to drugs or just young and running away from home. I am certainly all in favor of homeless outreach but at a certain point you cant exactly make the people come in, its def a complicated issue with no single solution.

Although a bit dated, this article provides a fairly balanced look at working for minimum wage vs. sitting home collecting government assistance.


From UC Berkeley so already somewhat suspect (liberal bias). This report just shows the amount spent on some govt. handouts. A higher minimum wage does not guarantee these handouts would be diminished.

Ohai, agree with you 1000x on MTA. It’s an embarrassment for NYC. Other global cities somehow manage to have amazing lines while NYC has a subway system that looks bad even by 3rd world standards.