Colorado Green Now

The latest ALCC news, including Colorado Green NOW articles, legislative updates, and programming announcements. 

Are bionic bugs the secret to defeating EAB? Email
News
Tuesday, August 25, 2015 03:00 AM


Bionic EAB female decoyHow do you catch a male emerald ash borer (EAB)? With a lady EAB, of course. To lure male EAB into traps, scientists have created impressive, lifelike female EAB decoys.

After using dead EABs and 3-D printed decoys failed—male EABs aren’t easily fooled—scientists created a decoy using biomimetic synthesis.

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Colorado Drought Response Portal Email
News

Coloradans often face water use regulationsThe Colorado Water Conservation Board maintains a web site for Colorado homeowners and landowners that helps identify rules and regulations regarding water use. Colorado's Drought Response Portal offers information about snowpack, reservoir conditions, and drought status. Colorado residents can also use the portal to connect with their local water utility and find out if there are any water restrictions in affect for their community.

 

 
How will the proposed rule updating exempt employee status affect your business? Email
News

The National Association of Landscape Professionals (NALP) is conducting a survey to learn how landscape businesses would be affected by the Department of Labor's proposed rule change regarding exempt employee status.

The following is a Legislative Alert from NALP:

Help Stop the Detrimental Proposed Changes by the Department of Labor that Could Change the Exempt Status of Overtime Pay to $50,440

Please participate in this survey to help us respond to the U.S. Department of Labor’s proposed devastating changes to the white collar exemptions to federal overtime pay requirements.

Currently, a person must satisfy three criteria to qualify as “exempt”:
1.    They must make a salary;
2.    That salary must be more than $455/week ($23,660 annually);
3.    Their “primary duties” must be consistent with managerial, professional or administrative positions as defined by DOL.

In the proposal, DOL is considering raising the minimum salary threshold to $970 per week ($50,440 annually); an increase of more than 100%. We need your help in collecting data about how this will impact your business. This information will help us provide comments to the federal register notice so we can document with data its impact to the industry as a whole; they will also need to hear directly from the businesses that will be affected. This data will help answer the Department’s questions regarding the current primary duties test used to determine whether an employee's primary responsibilities exempt them from overtime.

Please complete this survey before August 27, 2015.

Thank you,
Tom Delaney, NALP director of government affairs

Previously on the LAB:
Help request an extension to comment period on DOL Proposed Overtime RuleSubcommittee discusses Proposed Overtime Rule
DOL proposed rule regarding overtime eligibility for 'white collar' workers

 
Upcoming H-2B Final Wage Rule Webinar Email
News

H-2B visa program
From an email sent today from the H-2B Ombudsman:

The National Prevailing Wage Center (NPWC) is sending this e-mail to all survey contacts we’ve identified as those who have submitted H-2B surveys to our office within the past year.  This email is pertaining to the upcoming H-2B Final Wage Rule Webinar scheduled for August 21, 2015. Survey standards will be the focus of the webinar briefing.
 
The Department will host a public webinar to educate stakeholders, program users, and other interested members of the public on the changes to the H-2B program made by the H-2B 2015 Final Wage Rule, in effect as of April 29, 2015. The webinar briefing is scheduled for August 21, 2015, from 1:00 PM until 2:30 PM Eastern Daylight time. There is no pre-registration for the public webinar. The webinar will be accessible to the public on a first-come, first-served basis on the date specified.  For further information and instructions, please see the Department’s H-2B Final Wage Rule public webinar announcement located on the Department’s website at: http://www.foreignlaborcert.doleta.gov/.
 
Sincerely,
 
Ombudsman Program
Office of Foreign Labor Certification
Department of Labor
[email protected]

 
Drought: Pain or profit? Email
News
Written by Cherie Courtade   
Tuesday, August 11, 2015 08:00 AM

Drought impacts the landscape industryThe majority of owners and managers of Colorado landscape companies believe drought positions their companies more for profit than for pain according to a poll earlier this season by Associated Landscape Contractors of Colorado. In this poll, 85% of responding companies statewide said their businesses would not be hurt by drought – whenever it comes.

Optimism ranged from an enthusiastic, “I am SO going to profit off of drought!” to an optimistic, “We were fine in the last drought, and expect that with our reputation for Xeriscaping, we would do well in the next drought.”

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