The Hagstrom Report

Agriculture News As It Happens

Labor announces new adverse effect wage rates

The minimum hourly wage rates that employers must pay H-2A workers on temporary visas will go up in some states, down in others, and stay the same in some cases, the Labor Department announced today.

Labor sets the wages to make sure that pay to similarly employed U.S. workers are not adversely affected, the department said. The H-2A adverse effect wage rates are calculated for each occupation and location using USDA’s annual wages rates from its regional Farm Labor Survey of non-family field and livestock workers.

The rates are scheduled to be published Thursday, and are effective as of that day. See prepublication notice, linked below.

The Labor Department said the rates are being published earlier than anticipated in order to provide growers with as much advance notice of changes as possible and to reduce application processing delays.

The amounts that employers may charge their workers for providing three meals a day and the maximum travel subsistence reimbursement that a worker with receipts may claim in 2012 will be published in a separate Federal Register notice in early 2012.