On September 30, 2014, Mayor Bill de Blasio signed an executive order that will increase the minimum wage for workers who are employed at economic benefit projects that received at least one million dollars in subsidies from New York City. Specifically, the order requires employers who employ individuals at locations that were developed as part of an economic benefit projects that received at least one million dollars, effective immediately, to pay their employees at least $11.50 per hour if the employer provides health insurance, and $13.13 per hour if the employer does not provide health insurance. On January 1 of each year, the minimum wage amount will increase in an amount set by the Commissioner of Consumer Affairs.
The executive order applies to all “Subsidy Recipients” as well as all tenants, subtenants, leaseholder, subleaseholders and concessionaires of a Subsidy Recipient that occupy property improved or developed as part of a New York City economic benefit project. The Executive Order defines a “Subsidy Recipient” as any entity or person that receives financial assistance of one million dollars or more as part of an economic benefit project or any assigned or successor in interest of real property improved or developed as part of such an economic benefit project. This means that restaurants, bars and clubs that lease space from a Subsidy Recipient would be covered under the Executive Order and would have to pay at least $13.13 per hour to each employee assuming the employer does not provide health insurance to its employees.
However, the Executive Order only applies on a going-forward basis. It does not apply to any economic development project in which one million dollars or more in subsidies were awarded prior to September 30, 2014. That is, the Executive Order does not apply to those restaurants, bars and clubs that are currently leasing space in an economic development project.