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Cuomo to propose $15 minimum wage for all workers, say sources

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo greets a bystander

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo greets a bystander during a visit to a local market in San Juan, Puerto Rico on Sept. 8, 2015. Credit: AP / Ricardo Arduengo

ALBANY - Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo is expected to propose Thursday a $15-an-hour minimum wage for all workers, according to two state officials.

Cuomo is expected to announce his proposal to the state legislature at a news event with Vice President Joseph Biden in Manhattan. The announcement is listed only as "economy" on Cuomo's schedule.

Cuomo appears to be embracing a bill proposed by the state Assembly's Democratic majority, but which is opposed by the Senate's Republican majority.

Cuomo spokesman Rich Azzopardi declined to comment.

Cuomo's wage board recently approved a $15 minimum wage for fast-food workers, which Cuomo's labor commissioner is expected to accept.

Assembly Democrats for months have pushed for a $15 minimum wage for all workers.

The current statewide minimum wage is $8.75 an hour. That is scheduled to increase to $9 on Dec. 31.

Cuomo has previously said he doubted the Assembly's proposal for a $15 statewide minimum wage would pass the Senate. Cuomo instead had proposed raising the minimum wage to $10.50 with an $11.50 wage for New York City because of its higher cost of living.

Cuomo used his executive power to create a wage board to raise the minimum wage for fast-food workers after the legislature failed to agree on a bill this year. A statewide minimum wage increase would require Senate and Assembly approval.

Cuomo's announcement Thursday will come on the same day the Senate's Republican majority holds a hearing in Albany that will question Cuomo's use of a wage board to raise the fast-food minimum wage.

Raising the minimum wage has been a top priority of the Working Families Party, which endorsed Cuomo in his 2014 re-election bid after an internal struggle within the influential minor party.

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