While he’s glad a minimum wage increase is in the mix for Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s $142.6 budget proposal, Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver says future increases should be tied to the rate of inflation so it doesn’t become part of a “political football.”

“I think we should take the politics out of it for the future and tie to the minimum wage and index it to inflation so we don’t have to deal with this every five years, 10 years and adjust it to inflation,” Silver said.

For close observers of Silver, the statement may ring a bit unusual, considering that the powerful Assembly speaker is considered more than adept at Albany deal making and negotiating.

Silver last year called for a raise in the state’s minimum wage from $7.25 to $8.50 and then tie future increases to the rate of inflation.

The speaker called for the wage hike in a legislative election year and polls show that the proposal has broad support among New York voters, with more than 80 percent backing it.

Cuomo proposed in his budget yesterday that he is inserting a $8.75 minimum wage into his budget proposal, but it won’t be tied to inflation.

Silver wasn’t present for the budget unveiling yesterday, attending a bris for his grandson.

“I think there’s a good starting point to have the discussion over it, putting it in the budget,” Silver said.

Cuomo’s minimum wage proposal was put into an Article 7 bill, meaning it could be altered or taken out entirely.

“It’s a good start and good dicussion,” Silver said. “I would prefer that each time we did a raise it didn’t become a political football and what would happen automatically is we’d adjust it inflation.”

The move gives some wiggle room for Republicans in the Senate, who are now ruling in a majority coalition with five Democrats, to exert some influence over the final wage increase. But it also allows Silver to call for tying future increases to inflation.

Senate Republican Leader Dean Skelos told reporters after the budget address that “anything can be taken out of the budget.” But he wouldn’t rule out passing a wage hike this year as he did last year, when he called the Silver proposal a “job killer.”

Skelos is calling for a package of business tax cuts and credits, which he says could do more for the state’s job growth.