Farmworkers from Alabama and other Southern states will see their hours reduced to half on Thursday, after the Trump administration rolled back a rule that could have reduced overtime pay and eliminated other requirements.
The Trump administration on Wednesday rescinded a rule from 2014 that required states to report on the number of days they spent in the work force and overtime hours workers received.
The rule, which had been in place since 2012, was designed to prevent overtime violations by employers who didn’t pay overtime and to reduce the amount of overtime workers were owed.
Under the Trump-era rule, employers could receive a 10-day grace period to correct any violations.
The Labor Department said Thursday it had received several requests from the Department of Labor for additional information on the new rule.
The department is expected to release additional information at its next meeting, which is set for March 5 in Washington.
The new rule would affect at least 2.3 million workers and their employers.
The Department of Agriculture estimated the new overtime rules would cost about $6 billion annually.
The federal government paid $5.1 billion in overtime wages and $2.5 billion in benefits last year.
Under current law, the rule applies only to employees of employers that employ at least 500 people.
The cost of the new rules was estimated at $8.7 billion to $10.2 billion.
The changes come as Trump and other GOP lawmakers have been railing against what they have called illegal immigrants and “rapists.”
But the rule would have given employers an incentive to pay workers the right amount of time and overtime, and to provide employees with an incentive for working, including for part-time work, to keep their jobs.
The rules were originally scheduled to take effect on March 6.
But they were delayed until the week of Labor Day.
Trump’s administration said the rule was needed to help ensure workers are treated fairly under the law, but many Republicans said the cost of implementing the rule to workers would outweigh the cost to employers.
Republican lawmakers said the new policy will likely have a negative effect on the U.S. economy, and will also hurt the jobs of agricultural workers.
The USDA said it would publish a final rule to provide information on workers’ hours, overtime pay, and other factors related to the new labor regulations.