Will Governor Brown Sign or Veto Agricultural Overtime Bill?

Date: April 05, 2022

NFIB and coalition partners asked that she not and send it back to the Legislature instead.

It was the most contentious issue of the 2022 session and sometime this month, Gov. Kate Brown will finally end it with her signature or veto on House Bill 4002.

NFIB was part of a coalition that asked the governor to veto HB 4002. “Labor advocates refused to negotiate in any substantive way this session or the lead-up to it and they actively blew up negotiations last fall by filing a lawsuit and walking away. This is not the path to a solution that maximizes benefits to some while minimizing harm to others. It is not The Oregon Way,” wrote the coalition in the letter, which was published in the Bend Bulletin. “Ideally, a veto would cause the Legislature to go back and get this important issue right.”

“The threats posed by this bill are well documented in hours of farmer testimony from committee hearings and the floor speeches of rural legislators … We ask you to not turn your back on farm and ranch families at this pivotal moment.”

NFIB’s testimony against HB 4002 can be read here. The Oregon Capital Chronicle has additional information in this story.

From NFIB Oregon State Director Anthony Smith’s post-session report

“Undoubtedly the most complicated and controversial legislation of the session was HB 4002, a bill that requires, in just a few short years, agricultural employers to pay overtime for hours worked beyond 40 hours per week.

“As with previous versions, the finished product moves Oregon to a rigid, 40-hour per week threshold for ag overtime and relies on tax credits to partially offset these new costs for farmers and ranchers. These tax credits won’t work in the long run because when (not if) they go away, farmers and ranchers will be left without resources necessary to maintain their operations. This is not a workable solution to keep Oregon’s ag industry viable.”

Related Content: Small Business News | Agriculture | Oregon

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