Cuomo administration moves to raise servers' base wage from $5 to $7.50 in New York state

IndustriesAssociated Press

Restaurant servers, hotel housekeepers and other tipped workers in New York state will soon make $7.50 an hour before tips.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo's administration announced Tuesday that his labor commissioner will make the change after a state Wage Board recommended it last month.

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Businesses may pay tipped workers less than the standard $8.75 minimum wage as long as gratuities make up the difference. Currently, servers make a tipped wage of $5 per hour.

The increase to $7.50 goes into effect Dec. 31.

Labor advocates pushed to abolish the tipped wage altogether so servers would make the minimum wage before tips. But restaurant owners said higher labor costs would be a burden and could force them to raise menu prices or reduce hours for workers.