NY to end below-minimum wage for 70K tipped employees

| 08 Jan 2020 | 11:01

(AP) More than 70,000 tipped workers will no longer receive below-minimum wages by the end of 2020 under an order announced by New York's governor on Dec. 31. The order applies to a vast array of workers, including hairdressers, nail salon employees, valet parking attendants, tow truck drivers and tour guides, but not restaurant workers, many of whom did not want the change. Currently, New York employers can pay tipped employees below the state minimum wage. But employers can only do so if employees earn enough tips on average to make up the difference. Gov. Andrew Cuomo says New York will eliminate that system by Dec. 31, 2020, for tens of thousands of tipped workers, who will earn the minimum wage no matter how much they earn in tips. Labor groups celebrated Cuomo's announcement and said New York's system for paying certain tipped workers is too confusing and leads to wage theft and exploitation. But a spokeswoman for the New York State Car Wash Association said many of its members "may now need to change their business model and add automation, eliminating critical entry-level jobs."