The Department of Industrial Relations (DIR) and its Labor Commissioner’s Office recently launched an online system for reporting labor law violations. The new system simplifies the process for reporting wage theft and other labor law violations, and enables the Labor Commissioner’s Office to receive real-time leads on businesses that are breaking labor laws.

An administrative law judge has ordered Gonzalo Fernandez, who operates Fernandez Farms Inc. in Watsonville, to repay kickbacks and rent he collected from more than 400 H-2A workers.

According to the decision, Fernandez requested payments of more than $1,600 apiece from several hundred foreign workers over the 2010 and 2011 seasons as reimbursement for transportation and other costs of bringing the laborers from Mexico.

Last week, the Colorado Fruit and Vegetable Growers Association (CFVGA) held a roundtable discussion and asked U.S. Representatives Mike Coffman (CO-6) and Ken Buck (CO-4) for assistance in fighting government overregulation. Robert Sakata, CFVGA president and WG member, hosted the event that also included Colorado Department of Agriculture Commissioner Don Brown and representatives from the offices of Sens. Michael Bennet and Cory Gardner and U.S. Reps. Jared Polis and Ed Perlmutter.  

Jeff Janas

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