State Board Delays Cutting Work Week On Upstate Farms

State Board Delays

Cutting Work Week

On Upstate Farms

David Fisher

ALBANY – In a matter of grave concern to Upstate farmers, the state Farm Labor Wage Board  today delayed consideration of lowering the 60-hour farm labor overtime threshold as the unprecedented COVID challenge continues.

In a related story, the non-farm Upstate minimum wage rises from $11.80 to $12.50 in the New Year.

The farm board’s decision is the right one, said New York Farm Bureau President and board member David Fisher, in support of Chairman Brenda McDuffie’s position of avoiding any unintended consequences that could negatively impact New York’s farmworkers, family farms and access to local food.

“I had encouraged giving the process more time to fully evaluate what a lower threshold would mean for all involved, especially with such limited data from this challenging year,” said Fisher, a farmer in Madrid, St. Lawrence County.  “I’d like to thank my fellow wage board members for their time and professionalism.”

He encouraged the state Department of Labor to continue to work with the farming community “to do what is best for our farms and employees. We need each other for agricultural production and our rural economies to flourish.”

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