MIDDLETOWN, NY – Senator Mike Martucci (R,C,I-New Hampton) released the following statement in response to the State Department of Labor’s Farm Wage Board decision to delay lowering the 60-hour farm labor overtime threshold until at least November:
“During my campaign for State Senate, I was a vocal advocate for the farmers and family farms of my district. Through countless visits as well as roundtable discussions with farmers and Senate Republican leadership, it became abundantly clear that no issue was more pressing – or more threatening to the future of our family farms – than the Farmworkers Labor Law of 2019. Knowing this to be true, I am glad to see the Farm Wage Board has decided to delay lowering the mandatory overtime threshold for now.
New York farmers and farming organizations have been clear that any increases to the overtime mandates in this already burdensome new law would have devastating and permanent consequences for our state’s agriculture industry. The farms of my district are not only grappling with the changes enacted in this legislation, but they are doing so while some of their fiercest competitors sit just miles away across the state’s, and our district’s, border – out of reach from the grip of this deeply flawed law.
While this decision is a victory for our family farms, farmers, farmworkers, and consumers, it is also important to recognize that this is only a small step. Our farmers deserve a full tax credit to pay for the enormous costs imposed by these and other punitive regulations. The COVID-19 pandemic has only added to their list of challenges. As your State Senator, I will continue to speak out on behalf of our farmers and aggressively work toward our shared goals of achieving a vibrant food economy, recognizing the dignity of work, and preserving, protecting and strengthening our family farms.”
Mike Martucci is serving his first term as the Senator for the 42nd NYS Senate District which comprises all of Sullivan County and parts of Orange, Ulster and Delaware counties. He has been named the ranking member of the Senate Committees on Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities and Small Business, Commerce and Economic Development. Mike is a small businessman who employed hundreds of people locally at his former company, Quality Bus Service, which was responsible for safely transporting thousands of school children each day in and near the 42nd senate district. Mike and his wife Erin own a family-farm in the Town of Westtown and established a family foundation to support local women and children in need, educational opportunities, job creation, and agriculture initiatives. Mike and Erin have three children and live in the Town of Wawayanda.