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NYS Exempt Employee Salary Threshold Increases

January 4, 2022

As of this writing, NYS Department of Labor has not yet published the revised wage orders and summaries for most industries with the exception of the Building Service Industry for which the summary of wage order rates has been published. These documents are what employers typically reference for the NYS minimum wage and salary thresholds each year.

Long Island & Westchester moved to $15 per hour as of December 31, 2021 as well as a corresponding salary threshold of $1,125. New York City (both small and large employers) was already at the salary threshold that equates to a $15 per hour minimum wage so had no changes as of December 31.

For the remainder of NYS, the Building Services summary of wage order rates does include a chart of the minimum wage history back to 2016 and shows the $13.20 per hour minimum wage effective December 31, 2021. It also has other rate info as well as a chart of the salary thresholds for the executive and administrative exemptions. This includes the new salary threshold of $990 per week ($51,480 when annualized) in effect as of December 31, 2021. A reminder that the professional exemption is not covered by the NYS salary threshold and would therefore defer to the federal FLSA salary threshold, currently $684 per week ($35,568 when annualized).

Since the Building Service Industry summary does show the anticipated $990 per week salary threshold, it would be prudent for NYS employers in other industries subject to this threshold to ensure their exempt executive and administrative employees are at or above the threshold even though the wage orders for all the other industries have yet to be published. Keep in mind that employers may certainly choose not to move those exempt employees to the higher salary threshold and instead change their status to nonexempt to avoid further NYS  mandated salary increases going forward. We recommend discussing such changes and any related employee communications with your employment law attorney to ensure proper compliance.

Greater Rochester Chamber members with questions on this or other HR-related issues may contact the following HR Helpline staff for assistance: Kathy Richmond at (585) 256-4618 and Jennifer Suppé at (585) 256-4608.


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