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Vermont’s Minimum Wage Will Increase on January 1st

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Meals and Lodging Allowances Will Also See Slight Increases

Montpelier, VT – The Vermont Department of Labor announced today that the STATE minimum
wage rate will be increased to $8.73 per hour – from the current rate of $8.60 per hour – effective on
January 1, 2014.

Under Vermont statute (21 VSA § 384), Vermont’s minimum wage increases each year at the same
rate as the Consumer Price Index (as calculated in August for the preceding year, or at 5%, whichever
is less). The same calculation increase applies to the basic wage rate for tipped employees and the
maximum tip credit allowed, and for the permitted-deduction-rates for employer-provided rooms
and meals.

Service or tipped employees rate will increase to $4.23 per hour from $4.17. “Service or tipped”
employees may include individuals working in businesses such as hotels, motels, tourist places and
restaurants, and who customarily and regularly receive more than $120.00 a month in tips for direct
and personal service. The service or tipped employee’s total earnings during a pay period (a
combination of tips and basic wage) must equal or exceed the minimum wage of $8.73 per hour, and
if not the employer must make up the difference.

An employer may deduct from wages earned an allowance for meals and lodging actually furnished
and accepted. The allowances and the increased rates as of January 1, 2014 are as follows:
Breakfast $2.94 daily
Lunch $3.30 daily
Dinner $3.67 daily
Full Board $9.91 daily or $69.37 per week
Nightly Lodging $4.04 daily
Full Room $24.30 weekly
Full room & Board $83.93 per week

Vermont law requires all employers to post the minimum wage rates. Updated posters for both the
minimum wage and meals and lodging allowance can be found at the Vermont Department of
Labor’s website (www.labor.vermont.gov) under the “Publications” section.

Information about the minimum wage or other wage and hour regulations impacting Vermont’s
workforce can be found on the Vermont Department of Labor website at www.labor.vermont.gov or
contact the Department of Labor Wage and Hour Program at 802-828-0267.

 

For Immediate Release
October 25, 2013
Contact: Mathew Barewicz, Economic & Labor Market Information Chief
Vermont Department of Labor
Phone: 802-828-4153 or at mathew.barewicz@state.vt.us

First-of-its-kind program to stop tractor rollover deaths announced

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Farmers join UVM Extension Associate Dean, government officials at Sept. 28 launch

MORRISVILLE, Vt.—For the first time, Vermont farmers have access to a program that makes tractor safety
equipment affordable and simple to order. The University of Vermont (UVM) Extension announces today the
Vermont Rebates for Roll Bars program, one of two programs of its kind in the United States. It reimburses farmers 70 percent of the cost of their rollover protection kit—a roll bar and seatbelt—up to a savings of $765, and provides help to farmers with identifying and pricing the appropriate rollover kits for their tractors.
According to U.S. Department of Labor statistics, a farmer is 800 percent more likely to die while working than individuals in other jobs. The leading cause of these deaths is tractor overturns. The Northeast has the highest rate of tractor overturns in the country. The most recent tractor rollover fatality in Vermont was Bruce Bakaian, who died in Wheelock on July 31.
To launch his program, farmers and administrators of Vermont Rebates for Roll Bars will gather at noon on Tuesday, Sept. 28 at Under Orion Farm at 1009 Ducharme Road in Marshfield. UVM Extension Associate
Dean Richard LeVitre, Secretary of Agriculture Roger Allbee and Department of Health Commissioner Wendy
Davis will speak in support of this new effort.
“I grew up on a dairy farm in southern Vermont and know how careful you have to be, especially on side hills,” says Will Ameden, owner of Under Orion Farm in Marshfield, a 250-acre diversified organic farm. “I was also an EMT for 12 years, so I’ve seen first hand the result of not having proper rollover protection on your tractor.”
Vermont’s program is administered by the Northeast Center for Agricultural and Occupational Health (NEC), the organization behind a similar program in New York that has successfully accomplished a ten-fold increase in tractor rollover protection installation since the program’s inception in 2007. Cost and difficulty ordering the appropriate equipment were identified by NEC as the two key barriers to getting rollover protection on tractors.
“The Vermont Rebates for Roll Bars program will save lives and reduce serious injuries in Vermont as farmers step forward to participate in the program,” says Dean of UVM Extension Doug Lantagne. “Rollover protection devices on tractors are highly effective in protecting farmers if they take the steps to install and use them on their equipment.” A roll bar and seatbelt are 99 percent effective in preventing death and serious injury in the event of a rollover.
“Our farmers are the backbone of our economy and communities,” says Secretary Allbee. “The work they do
provides us with fresh, quality foods and milk and maintains our open, working landscape that we as
Vermonters enjoy every day and that draws visitors to our state each year. But there are many inherent risks that our farmers face everyday. The Vermont Rebates for Roll Bars program helps to mitigate the risks of tractor rollovers and will certainly help to decrease injuries on the farm. Leading sponsor, Cooperative Insurance Companies, has committed $45,000 to the program over the next three years. UVM Extension is seeking additional funding from other public and private sources.
Vermont tractor owners may call toll-free 877-ROPS-R4U (877-767-7748) for more information or to register for a rollover kit.

Snow Plowing and Power Lines

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Snow storage under or near power lines creates a serious risk to employees and the
general public. The Vermont Department of Labor, in conjunction with Vermont electric
utilities provides the following precautions to prevent serious injury or death.

Typical overhead power lines in Vermont are not insulated and are between 7,200 and
69,000 volts. If you pile snow under or near the power line you create a potential
electrical hazard that could seriously injure, burn or kill a person. Maintain a minimum
10 foot clear distance between the workers, their tools and equipment including snow
removal equipment and overhead power lines up to 50,000 volts. Over 50,000 volts
maintain a minimum clear distance of 10 feet plus 4 inches per every additional 10,000
volts.

Snow Removal near or under power lines should be a thought out planned process with
Safety the #1 concern. For Specific Safe Snow Removal Practices Near or Under Utility
Power Lines contact your local electric power company.