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The Upstate Economy

Many Jefferson County residents feel minimum wage increase will make their lives worse

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17th Annual Jefferson County Survey of the Community
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A survey released this week by Jefferson Community College asked a sampling of county residents what effect they think the increase in the minimum wage to $12.50 an hour will have on their lives.

Research Director Joel LaLone says, while half of those surveyed said the increase would have no impact, 23 percent said it would make their standard of living worse.

“The participants that have some college education but less than a four-year degree and are older and typically in the middle income level around the $50,000 to $75,000 are in the group most likely to say it would worsen.”

Only 17 percent believe it will improve their standard of living. The survey did not ask residents why they hold those beliefs. The minimum wage in New York state is scheduled to gradually increase from $9 an hour to $12.50 by the end of 2020.