San Francisco, CA – April 26, 2022: California Governor Gavin Newsom speak at the Kindergarten to College program Progress update Press Conference in San Francisco

California Democrats are now moving to delay a new $25 an hour healthcare worker minimum wage hike after Governor Newsom’s office estimated last week that the wage hike would cost the state an additional $4 billion annually. The state was warned of the cost last year before being signed into law, however, Governor Newsom ignored that warning and signed the bill anyways, The Washington Examiner reported.

If the bill is not delayed, the mimum wage for all healthcare workers including janitors and administration staff, will jump from $16 per hour to between $18 and $23 this Saturday, with wages eventally rising to at least $25 by 2028. The increase is expected to add another $4 billion to California’s debt, which already stands at $45 billion, and the state is projected to face a $27.6 billion deficit for fiscal year 2024-2025.

Democratic State Senator Maria Elana Durazo, the law’s author, has submitted paperwork for the increase to be delayed until July 1st to allow time for technical changes and will align the bill with the budget year.

“SB 525 provided a historic wage increase to more than 450,000 health care workers mainly women and people of color, who take care of us and keep our health care system functioning,” Durazo said in a statement. “It is clear that these workers need this to help support their families and I appreciate health care employers that recognized this and have begun to increase wages. SB 828 moves the start date of the health care minimum wage by one month to July 1, 2024. This aligns SB 525 with the budget year and allows the legislature to continue discussions with the administration and technical changes to ensure health care workers get their raises.”

In September, Newsom signed a law increasing the minimum wage for fast food workers to $20 an hour, resulting in a 10% increase in prices, more than any other state, according to Dataessential, a market research firm.

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