Miller rallies for tipped wage credit

Assemblyman Brian Miller (R,I,C,Ref-New Hartford) joined restaurant workers at a rally today in the state Capitol to protect the state’s tipped wage credit. The governor proposed eliminating the credit to mandate a higher hourly wage for workers, which is widely opposed by restaurants and many wait staff employees, as well.

“There is no question that working in a restaurant is a hard job, but it is a job that many of my constituents love and do not want to see changed,” said Miller. “I have heard from many people who work as servers and they don’t support the governor’s plan because they stand to lose money. I stand behind these workers and what they believe is best for them and their families.”

Many groups oppose the governor’s proposal, including the Restaurant Workers of America (who sponsored today’s rally), the Business Council of New York State, the New York State Hospitality and Tourism Alliance, multiple chambers of commerce, the Empire State Restaurant and Tavern Association and Unshackle Upstate, among others.

Their opposition comes from the fact that in New York state there is not a “subminimum wage” (tipped workers earn a base of at least $7.50 an hour before tips, whereas in places like Washington D.C., they earn just $3.89 an hour), workers themselves have testified at the state Department of Labor hearings that they favor the current system and expressed their concerns about losing compensation should the tipped wage be eliminated.

Furthermore, a survey of 486 restaurants (employing nearly 14,000 tipped workers) from the New York City Hospitality Alliance found that, on average, servers earn $25 per hour under the current system, significantly higher than the governor’s proposed hourly minimum wage.

Assemblyman Miller represents the 101st District consisting of parts of Delaware, Herkimer, Oneida, Orange, Otsego, Sullivan and Ulster counties. For more information, visit Miller’s Official Website.

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