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Updates on the New H-2A Rule

Jennifer Zurko
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Updates on the New H-2A Rule

Rep. Kelly Armstrong (R-ND), Rep. Cliff Bentz (R-OR-02), Rep. Dusty Johnson (R-SD), Rep. Bill Huizenga (R-MI-04) and Rep. John Moolenaar (R-MI-02) introduced H. J. Res. 134, providing for congressional disapproval under chapter 8 of title 5, United States Code, of the rule submitted by the Department of Labor, relating to ‘‘Improving Protections for Workers in Temporary Agricultural Employment in the United States.’’

This Resolution would utilize the Congressional Review Act to reverse the Department of Labor’s April 29 rule governing the certification of temporary, nonimmigrant workers on H-2A visas. The DOL announced a final rule that places more regulatory burdens upon farmers, ranchers, producers and growers. AmericanHort is supportive of this effort to assist with the new H-2A Rule.

In April, the DOL announced a final rule to strengthen protections for farmworkers. It targets vulnerability and abuses experienced by workers under the H-2A program that undermine fair labor standards for all farm-workers in the U.S. The rule increases and strengthens worker protections, enhances the Department’s enforcement capabilities in the H-2A temporary agricultural employ-ment program, and helps to ensure that an employer’s use of the H-2A program does not adversely affect the wages and working conditions of workers in the U.S.

The final rule will take effect on June 28, 2024. For more information, GO HERE

AmericanHort shared comments with key DOL officials last November expressing several concerns with the proposed rules (read them HERE).

Stay tuned for more information that AmericanHort will be putting together to educate and support its members coming soon.



Contact Your Senators to Pass the Tax Relief for American Families and Workers Act

AmericanHort stands behind H.R. 7024, the Tax Relief for American Families and Workers Act, which received bipartisan approval in the House with a vote of 357 to 70. This legislation is designed to aid growers, farmers, landowners, producers and workers throughout the agriculture and food supply chain.

AmericanHort members can contact their senators directly to encourage them to support H.R. 7024 HERE

—Source: AmericanHort’s Capitol Wire newsletter


Article ImageKamron Newberry Joins the AmericanHort D.C. Office

Kamron Newberry joins the AmericanHort Advocacy and Government Affairs team in Washington, D.C., as the Advocacy Project Coordinator. He’ll help develop and manage strategic advocacy projects for AmericanHort and its members. His initial focus will be on updating the American Standard for Nursery Stock, the ANSI certified industry-standard providing buyers and sellers of nursery stock with a common terminology to facilitate commercial transactions involving nursery stock.

A Texas Tech University alum, Kamron brings a strong horticultural background with a Bachelor of Science degree in Plant and Soil Science and a Master of Science degree in Horticulture Science. While at Texas Tech, Kamron worked as a researcher in the Urban Horticulture and Sustainability Lab Group, where he focused on greenhouse crop production, controlled environment agriculture systems and horticultural resource efficiency. He also held the role of assistant greenhouse manager for the Texas Tech University Horticulture Gardens and Greenhouse Complex.



AmericanHort Helps Drive Congressional Support for Increased Funding for the IR-4 Project

In a bipartisan effort to support research for specialty crop growers, Rep. Lori Chavez-Deremer (R-OR-05) and Rep. Jimmy Panetta (D-CA-19) spearheaded a Dear Colleague letter to appropriators encouraging them to increase funding to the authorized level for the IR-4 Project for fiscal year 2025.

Authorized at $25 million, the IR-4 project was funded at $15 million each year for fiscal years 2023 and 2024. The IR-4 Project holds paramount importance for AmericanHort and our members as it serves as a pivotal bridge between scientific advancements and the practical needs of growers, ensuring the availability of safe and effective pest management tools for horticultural crops. Further, the project focuses on facilitating the registration of pest control products for specialty crop production, including biological pest control agents and biochemicals that play an important role in implementing Integrated Pest Management (IPM), and for nursery and greenhouse producers to maintain progress consistent with major crop producers.

With encouragement from AmericanHort, this letter had bipartisan support from eight Republicans and 23 Democrats. AmericanHort will continue to push for increased funding for this vital program.

—Kamron Newberry & Matt Mika

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