The Treasury Department announced today more changes to the large employer mandate.  The mandate requires employers with 50 or more full time equivalent employees (“employees”) to offer health benefits to full-time employees or face potential tax penalties (smaller employers are not subject to the mandate). The mandate was set to begin January 1, 2014.  The Obama Administration previously delayed the mandate in the summer of 2013 until 2015.

Jonathan Alexander

“On behalf of all the growers and members of Western Growers, I thank the President of the United States for signing into law the new five-year farm bill.  On this occasion, I also want to express my deep thanks to Chairwoman Stabenow, Chairman Lucas, and Ranking Members Cochran and Peterson for the tremendous work they have done to complete this bill.  Their hard work and the countless hours of work done by our industry champions in Congress -- especially our friends on the two Agriculture Committees -- has resulted in a good piece of legislation that will serve our industry well. 

Wendy Fink-Weber

According the Imperial Valley News, the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) has come out with a new drought resources web page to provide a clearinghouse of information to water-strapped producers.  Also available in Spanish, the web page includes critical information and links to local, state and national agencies that may offer assistance programs to farmers and ranchers who have been harmed by the drought.

Jeff Janas

Western Growers is once again participating in the annual California Wage and Benefit Survey conducted by Farm Employers Labor Service (FELS®). The survey provides a market reference for growers making wage and benefit decisions for 14 on-the-farm jobs including: supervisors and foremen; mechanics; equipment operators and tractor drivers; irrigators; and general laborers.

Jason Resnick

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