The state budget provides for slightly altered implementation of several actions which Livingston County strongly opposed, including state mandated $15 minimum wage, 12-week paid family leave for employees of business, and having counties cover county Medicaid costs.
“The state changed their tune a lot during negotiations, but New Yorkers deserve better than what happened this budget year,” said Livingston County Administrator Ian Coyle. “Both minimum wage increases and paid family leave made it into the budget. The state did back off their original proposition in regards to counties coming up with $250 million in state Medicaid savings.”
New York City will still take on a gradual minimum wage increase to $15 by the end of 2018. In upstate New York, minimum wage will gradually increase to $12.50 by 2020.
Effective January 2019, businesses in New York State will have to provide 12 weeks of paid family leave to employees. This will be subject to collective bargaining, which includes unions.
Coyle released a statement on the night of March 31 taking a strong stance against Governor Cuomo’s proposition that counties in New York State pay for their own Medicaid, which is currently covered by the state. In the final hours of budget negotiations, it was decided that counties and New York State will ‘jointly find the $250 million.’
“The state originally was going to charge the counties with coming up with money for county Medicaid, a total of $250 million,” said Coyle. “They backed off of that costly change. Still, the Governor maintains that we have no incentive to be ethical unless we have a financial stake in our Medicaid. He’s wrong.”