Pay raise for state lawmakers may tie to minimum wage hike

State lawmakers in Albany seem willing to reconvene in a special legislative session before the end of the year to vote on a pay raise for lawmakers, but some Democrats insist that any raise be tied to a hike in the state's minimum wage. Zack Fink filed the following report.
In Albany, it's often the art of the deal. One of the leaders gets something for his members during a negotiation, and in exchange, one of the other leaders gets something else.

There appears to be broad agreement to hold a special legislative session to grant lawmakers their first salary increase since 1999, but some believe any vote must also include a minimum wage hike.

"I think lawmakers, after more than a decade, deserve a pay raise, but 3 million New Yorkers who are working at poverty-level pay deserve an increase, too," said Michael Kink, of A Strong Economy for All. "Doing the two of them together makes good economic sense and good government sense."

After holding a closed-door meeting with his members in Albany Monday, Senate Republican leader Dean Skelos said a pay raise is on the table, but he ruled out a vote on the Dream Act or campaign finance reform, two pieces of legislation sought by Democrats. He was less definitive about revisiting the minimum wage.

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