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NY court upholds $15 minimum wage for fast-food workers

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ALBANY, N.Y. — A state court has upheld the decision by New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s administration to gradually raise the hourly minimum wage for many fast-food workers to $15.

The Appellate Division panel’s five justices are supporting last December’s finding by the New York Industrial Board of Appeals. That board ruled that the decision by a state wage board and labor commissioner were lawful, rejecting a challenge by the National Restaurant Association.

The court says New York’s subsequent enactment of legislation for more gradual statewide minimum wage increases to $15 doesn’t make this case moot.

Justice Eugene Devine writes that the wage board noted correctly that fast food chains had experienced significant profit increases without significant wage increases. He implied those profits were “‘wrung from the necessities of their employees.'”