Victims of the $15 minimum wage

As predicted, the $15 minimum wage is forcing metropolis employers to cut staff, shorten or scrap shifts, hike prices, cancel progress plans and even shut areas.

The mandate took effect Jan. 1 for metropolis firms with 11 or further employees — and might hit even the smallest firms come Dec. 31.

As The Wall Street Journal reported Tuesday, employers say they’re struggling to manage to the whopping wage improve — up 66 p.c since merely 2016 — and making primary shifts in plans.

That echoes a report by the New York City Hospitality Alliance last yr, after wage hikes in 2017 and 2018, “full-service restaurants recorded a 1.6 percent job loss.” That was the “first recorded annual loss in two decades,” notes the group’s govt director, Andrew Rigie.

Yes, lefty and union-backed economists launched a report last week claiming a neighborhood restaurant-jobs progress. But the metropolis’s Independent Budget Office put the 2018 drop at 6,000 jobs or about 3.4 p.c.

Recall that the $15 mandate hit while lawmakers moreover slapped employers with totally different burdens, much like paid sick and medical go away. The load merely retains getting heavier.

Yet the City Council seems clueless as to why so many firms are literally discovering it laborious to survive: Last month, it handed a number of funds to generate data to help increase understand the downside.

Hello? If pols protect socking firms with new costs and legal guidelines, what do they suppose goes to happen?

Susannah Koteen, who owns the Lido Restaurant in Harlem, says she has diminished on shifts and the extra time and raises her prices further ceaselessly now. She moreover gave up on plans to maneuver to a much bigger site.

Queens Chamber of Commerce president Thomas Grech notably blames the $15 mandate for a spike in newly closed small firms. Employers are “cutting their staff. They’re cutting their hours. They’re shutting down,” he says.

Yes, as Steve Cuozzo these days well-known on these pages, on-line retailers have injury brick-and-mortar retailers. And some landlords have hiked rents, fueling vacancies.

But taxes, legal guidelines and mandates like the minimum wage are amongst the worst culprits. And metropolis and state lawmakers protect together with new burdens, all the time claiming owners can take up the extra hit. Some, for instance, now have to ditch the state’s specific, lower minimum wage for tipped employees (already these days pushed as a lot as $10 an hour for food-service employers with larger than 10 employees).

Hitting employers moreover hits their employees and purchasers — usually worse than any “help” from a mandate: $15 an hour isn’t worth so much if it moreover cuts your hours to zero.

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