12:30 pm Dec. 28, 20111
The "living wage" bill currently being debated in the New York City Council may get a boost soon, according to sources who tell City & State that "one or more" City Council members are going to announce their support for the legislation "in the coming days."
The bill is opposed by the Bloomberg administration and has been held up by City Council Speaker Christine Quinn, who has hinted that she would support an amended version of it. As of now, according to a page set up by supporters of the bill, there are 29 City Council members, all Democrats, who support the current version.
Harlem Democrat Inez Dickens withdrew her support, saying in a recent op-ed she feared "the legislation will have an adverse impact on small, minority-and women-owned-businesses in my district."
So, assuming none of the Republicans on the 51-member Council ends up supporting the bill, advocates would need at least five of the 15 remaining uncommitted Democratic Council members (not counting the speaker) to sign on in order to override an all-but-certain mayoral veto.
They'll also need Quinn, at the very least, not to stand in the way. (Witness the paid-sick-day legislation that had the support of 35 members but was opposed by the mayor and shelved by the speaker, who often governs as Bloomberg's ally.)
Here are the Democrats who, as far as I know, have yet to declare support or opposition to the bill:
Leroy Comrie, Jr.
Karen Koslowitz (She's a former union member, and signed on as a sponsor of the prevailing wage bill last year.)
Lew Fidler-Brooklyn (He's preparing to run for the State Senate in a relatively conservative district, whenever the governor calls for a special election to fill the seat vacated by Carl Kruger.)
Domenic Recchia-Broklyn (He's the finance chairman and has a good working relationship with the speaker and the mayor.)
Peter Vallone Jr. (He told me yesterday, "If the bill was actually the same as the one in Los Angeles I would consider it, but this bill is a job killer and I am opposed to it." [clarified].)
UPDATE: Colin Campbell reminds me that Fidler put out a statement explaining his support "in principle" for the legislation, while raising doubts about the specifics, and noting that the Kingsbridge Armory—a development project where the push for a living wage in New York City started—"remains empty today and not a single job has been created there."
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