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Want to comment on farm OT proposal? Here’s how

Posted 9/22/22

Recently the Farm Laborer’s Wage Board released recommendations for lowering the overtime threshold for farmworkers in New York from 60 to 40 hours over a 10-year period.

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Want to comment on farm OT proposal? Here’s how

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Recently the Farm Laborer’s Wage Board released recommendations for lowering the overtime threshold for farmworkers in New York from 60 to 40 hours over a 10-year period.

The proposal calls for a gradual reduction in the number of work hours before overtime kicks in, starting in 2024. Every two years, the overtime threshold would decrease. The threshold would drop to 56 hours per week in 2024; 52 hours in 2026; 48 hours in 2028; 44 hours in 2030; until it reaches 40 hours per week in 2032.

State Labor Commissioner Roberta Reardon is accepting public comments as she considers whether to lower the overtime threshold for farmworkers; however time to still comment is growing short. The deadline for comments is Monday, Sept. 26.

Comments can be emailed to regulations@labor.ny.gov or mailed to New York State Department of Labor, W. Averill Harriman State Office Campus, Building 12, Room 509, Albany, NY 12240.

Supporters of the proposal include some lawmakers and advocacy groups that believe farmworkers should have an overtime threshold similar to other industries. The proposal is opposed by many farmers, state and local farm and agribusinesses, who say that it could lead farms — particularly family farms — to close or move out of state.

Reardon is in the midst of a 45-day review period. She will either accept or reject the wage board’s recommendations. If accepts the wage board’s overtime plan, then the state Department of Labor will issue new regulations.

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