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Ag laws taking effect in 2024

Ag laws taking effect in 2024

California and Colorado are among states with new ag laws coming into effect

By Diego Flammini
Staff Writer

On Jan. 1, 2024, many pieces of legislation signed in 2023 will take effect. Here’s a look around the U.S. at some new pieces of ag law that may affect the ag community.

In California, the minimum wage will increase to $16 per hour.

And there’s overtime changes with respect to paying agricultural workers.

As of Jan. 1, 2024, overtime pay is required for ag workers after they exceed 8.5 hours per day or 45 hours per week. In 2023, employers had to pay overtime after 9 hours per day and 50 hours per week.

And in 2025, the overtime threshold for ag workers in California will decrease to 8 hours per day and 40 hours per week.

An immigration bill in California also takes effect on Jan. 1.

SB 831, under the Immigration and Nationality Act, allows the governor and U.S. Attorney General’s Office to develop a program granting immigration parole to undocumented agricultural workers.

This program provides the undocumented workers with work visas and protects them from deportation.

Changes in Colorado may also impact the state’s ag community.

Like California, the minimum wage in Colorado is increasing as of Jan. 1.

Workers in the state will earn $14.42 per hour, up from $13.65 per hour.

And like California, overtime pay for ag workers in Colorado will change.

Ag employers will be required to pay overtime after 56 hours per week. That number will decrease to 48 hours in 2025.

HB23-1011, which creates a right-to-repair for agricultural equipment, also takes effect.

As of Jan. 1, 2024, manufacturers are required to provide parts, software, tools, manuals and other items “to allow an independent repair provider or owner to conduct diagnostic, maintenance, or repair services on the owner’s agricultural equipment,” the bill says.

Governor Jared Polis signed the law in April 2023.

Minimum wage is going up in many states across the U.S.

The full list can be found here.

In Pennsylvania, a new law going into effect will support local agriculture.

The Preferred Organic Program Trademark, which Gov. Shapiro made permanent in November, helps increase brand recognition and lets consumers know which products came from organic operations.

And in Connecticut, Jan. 1 is the deadline for two state departments to consult with one another.

The Department of Economic and Community Development and the commissioner of agriculture are to work towards creating a strategy promoting the construction of grocery stores in food desert neighborhoods, and to expand the availability of nutritious food.

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