People trying to live on minimum wage in The Big Apple may be biting off more than they can chew. While the minimum wage there is $8.75 an hour, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology
says $12.75 an hour is the lowest wage at which subsistence needs can be met by a single person with no dependents in New York City.
A living wage is defined as the lowest wage at which subsistence needs can be met by an employee. The needs of each employee differ based on marital status, number of children, debt and other cost-of-living considerations. A living wage can include general benefits such as health and dental care.
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According to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, living wage in New York City is $12.75 an hour for a single person, $24.69 for an adult with one child, $32.30 for an adult with two children, $41.91 for an adult with three children, $17.75 for two adults, $20.93 for two adults and a child, $22.32 for two adults with two children and $26.12 for two adults with three children.
Meanwhile, a minimum wage, is the lowest amount of compensation an employee must receive while performing a specific job.
According to the Department of Labor
, 29 states and the District of Columbia mandate minimum wages higher than the federal level of $7.25 an hour, while 14 states use the federal minimum wage, two states have minimum wages lower than the federal level and five states require no minimum wage. Minimum wage throughout the state of New York, however, is $8.75 an hour.
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An employee is entitled to whichever among the state and federal minimum wage levels is higher, meaning the minimum wage in New York City is the New York state rate of $8.75 an hour rather than the federal rate.
New York's minimum wage is set to rise to $9 an hour at the end of 2015, though Republican opposition recently thwarted Gov. Andrew Cuomo's efforts to raise it to $11.50 in New York City and $10.50 elsewhere in the state, reports The Christian Science Monitor.
New York City also has in place a "living wage law" that mandates how much employers must pay workers on economic development projects that receive as much as $1 million in city subsidies, according to Newsmax.
In September 2014, Mayor Michael De Blasio signed an executive order requiring employers to pay such workers as much as much as $13.13 an hour for employees who don't receive benefits.
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