Newly Signed California Law Expands Overtime To Farmworkers

Newly Signed California Law Expands Overtime To Farmworkers

Workers at Golden State Bulb Growers clean Calla tubers and select the best quality bulbs, placing them on conveyors to be graded, counted and sorted in the new systemAccording to an AP Story on MSN.com, farmworkers in the nation’s largest agricultural state will be entitled to the same overtime pay as most other hourly workers, under a law that California Gov. Jerry Brown said Monday that he had signed.

The new law, which will be phased in beginning in 2019, is the first of its kind in the nation to end the 80-year-old practice of applying separate labor rules to agricultural laborers.

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AB1066 will gradually lower the number of hours that irrigators, ranch hands, and people who tend crops must work before accruing additional compensation. It will take full effect in 2022 for most businesses and in 2025 for farms with 25 or fewer employees.

Opponents argue the legislation will raise costs for farmers and make it more difficult for them to compete with rivals in other states and countries, and that added costs will force employers to cut workers’ hours, ultimately hurting hundreds of thousands of people in California.

Read the full story here, and watch for more updates on GreenhouseGrower.com covering what the passage of this bill might mean for the greenhouse industry.