NYS Minimum Wage and Exempt Minimum Salary Level Increases Effective 12/31/2016, Including Enforcement

As predicted, the NYS minimum wage for hourly nonexempt employees and the minimum salary levels for exempt employees rose effective December 31, 2016, making good use of the work in preparing for the still-delayed Federal exempt minimum salary level changes:

From the NYS Department of Labor website:

From 12/31/2016 to 12/30/2017, the basic minimum wage is $9.70 per hour in most of New York State. There are different minimum wage rates for: the fast food industry; Long Island; Westchester County; and large and small employers in New York City. If you have questions, please review the information listed below. If you need additional assistance or want to file a complaint, please call: 1-888-4-NYSDOL (1-888-469-7365).

Each time the New York State minimum wage increases, the state’s minimum salary required for executive and administrative employees will increase proportionately. On December 31, 2016, the state minimum weekly salary for administrative and executive employees will range from $727.50 per week for employees outside of New York City and Nassau, Suffolk and Westchester counties, to $825.00 per week for employees who work in New York City for large employers and Fast Food Establishments.

During a news conference on Monday, January 2, 2016, NYS Governor Andrew Cuomo announced a 200-person statewide Wage Enforcement Task force charged with enforcing employer compliance with the new wage rates mentioned above via proactive investigation, employer education and employee reports of noncompliance via the above hotline. As an understanding nod to NYS employers, the Albany Times Union reiterated the Governor’s assertion that “the state would only seek to sanction employers whose wage violations were willful or egregious, and not merely the product of ignorance or error.”

NYS employers: as you process payroll after the holiday weekend, ensure that you’ve made these wage changes to support compliance and minimize risk, in business and at work.

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