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Governor Signs Farmworker Overtime Bill

Sacramento, CA — The California Farm Bureau and the Mother Lode’s state Senator are criticizing a bill signed into law yesterday by Governor Jerry Brown.

It requires farmworkers to receive the same overtime pay as employees in other industries. Farmworkers will start receiving overtime pay after eight hours per day or 40 hours per week, as opposed to the current rules of 10 hours per day or 60 hours per week.

District 8 Republican Senator Tom Berryhill says, “Of the 789 bills presented to the Governor in the final days of the legislative session, no one bill will be ultimately more devastating to the California economy than Assembly Bill 1066. While well intended, this bill will result in less income for the agricultural worker.”

Paul Wegner, President of the California Farm Bureau Federation was also dire about the legislation, saying, “Those who work on California farms will see reduced paychecks and have their lives disrupted as these new worker overtime rules come into play. California consumers will have fewer opportunities to buy California-grown farm products that are produced under the most stringent food safety, employment and environmental rules in the world.”

Proponents, however, praised the bill as a way to give equal protections and rights to California farmworkers.