Governor’s Budget Proposal…the Good and the Bad

Governor Hochul presented her Executive Budget proposal earlier this month and it had some proposals that are good for your business, but it also includes some proposals that are bad for your business. Here are the key elements:

Index the Minimum Wage – As promised in the State of the State Message, the Governor proposed indexing the minimum wage to the rate of inflation after the minimum wage in each part of the State reaches $15 per hour. The proposal includes a 3% annual cap on increases. The Governor’s proposal maintains the tipped wage for foodservice workers, subject to annual increases based on the rate of inflation as with the general minimum wage.

State Liquor Authority Improvements – The Governor’s budget includes a number of proposals to improve the agency’s operations and responsiveness. They include expediting the process for approving corporate changes, expediting the local government notification process, expanding the premises that qualify for temporary retail permits, extending the term of temporary retail permits, and authorizing temporary retail permittees to purchase products on credit.

Waste Reduction & Recycling – This proposal creates an extended producer responsibility program for paper and packaging. It would require all producers to join a producer responsibility organization that will be responsible for creating a program to provide for the collection and recycling of packaging and paper products. There is some discussion about removing wine and spirits containers from this proposal and adding them to the bottle bill.