Council members pitch living wage bill for subsidized developments

May 24, 2010 10:00AM

Oliver Koppell

Council members Oliver Koppell and Annabel Palma, who both represent districts in the Bronx, are set to pitch a bill Tuesday that would require wages of at least $10 per hour for all workers on development projects that are receiving public subsidies, according to the New York Times. The proposed wage is almost $3 more than the current minimum wage, $7.25. The move is likely to draw harsh criticism from Mayor Michael Bloomberg who vehemently opposed similar legislation at the Kingsbridge Armory project in the Bronx, before being defeated in a public stalemate with the City Council last December. Although approximately 140 different metropolitan regions nationwide have adopted similar laws, these policies have drawn harsh criticism from the real estate industry, which claims that they hamper development efforts. But Koppell contends that the bill is crucial to workers’ rights. “The idea is, where government subsidies are involved, the people who receive those subsidies should not be paying poverty-level wages,” Koppell said. [NYT]