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OSU Extension

College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences

March 3, 2020 - 8:15am --

Dependable labor is an important component of any successful farm.  For many farms, finding that labor involves hiring employees. All employers, including farms, employing farm labor must report all new hires to the state of Ohio. A new hire is defined an employee who has not previously been employed by the employer; or was previously employed by the employer but has been separated from such prior employment for at least 60 consecutive days.  The state of Ohio has a very good website that provides information about reporting new hires, answers frequently asked questions and walks employers through the process. The website is at or type “Ohio new hire reporting” into any browser to find the website.

Specifically, the Ohio Revised Code requires all employers to submit their new hire reports within 20 days after the employee is hired. Typically, the paperwork for this reporting requirement should get taken care of on the first day that the employee reports to work.  The information that needs to be reported includes the employer’s federal tax ID or employer identification number, the employer’s name, and the address where the payroll is processed if different from the living address.  Information required from the employee is their name, mailing address, date of hire, state of hire and some official form of identification, such as a driver’s license, passport, work visa, and/or social security number. Ohio has a new hire reporting form that can either be manually filled out and mailed in or can be filled out and submitted electronically.  Reporting is done to the state of Ohio through the Ohio New Hire Reporting Center located in Columbus. 

            Important forms for new hires are the W-4 state and federal tax withholding form and the I-9 Employment Eligibility Verification form.  Information about the W-4 form as well as the employer ID number is available on-line at  The I-9 employment form is a federal requirement through the office of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. There is an employee information section and an employer information section.  By or on the first day of employment the new employee should complete the employee information and present a required document or documents so that the employer can complete their section.  Acceptable documents are classified as either list A, B or C.  They include documents such as driver’s license, passport, work visa, and/or social security number. 

The I-9 form is retained and stored by the employer and is subject to inspection by officials from the Department of Homeland Security, Department of Immigration, Department of Justice or the Department of Labor.  The form and information about the I-9 form is available on-line at   Another good resource for farms that may be hiring immigrant labor is the e-verify site at    

E-Verify is a web-based system that allows enrolled employers to confirm the eligibility of their employees to work in the United States. E-Verify employers verify the identity and employment eligibility of newly hired employees by electronically matching information provided by employees on the Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification, against records available to the Social Security Administration (SSA) and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).


Fertilizer Applicator Certification Offered

SB 150 established that all private and commercial fertilizer applicators who apply commercial fertilizer (not manure) to more than 50 acres are required to obtain fertilizer certification.  Fertilizer applied through the planter box as a starter fertilizer is not included in this requirement. 

Wayne and Holmes County Extension offices are offering a fertilizer applicator certification training on Friday, March 27 from 12:30 pm to 3:30 pm in the Commissioner's meeting room, located on the top floor of the Wayne County Administration Building, 428 West Liberty Street in Wooster. The cost of the certification training is $35/person.  Pre-register by contacting the Wayne County Extension office at 330-264-8722.


Overholt Drainage School

The 2020 Overholt Drainage School will be held March 9-12 at the Fairfield County Agricultural Center (831 College Ave, Lancaster, OH 43130).  This year’s program includes the following topics: Agricultural Subsurface Drainage: System Design, Layout and Installation; Drainage Water Management: Controlled Drainage System Design, Layout and Installation; Applications for Water Management, Drainage Water Harvesting; and Water Quality Improvement Practices for Midwest Agricultural Drainage.

The Overholt Drainage School is designed and taught to provide continuing education for land improvement contractors, soil and water conservation technicians, farmers, engineers, crop consultants, educators and others interested in advancing their knowledge of basic concepts, principles, and skills related to the purpose, design, layout, construction, and management of Soil and Water Conservation Systems. The School has been taught for over 50 years and provides a straight-forward hands-on approach.

The Drainage School brochure and registration is available at  Contact Larry Brown at or call 614-292-3826 for more information.


Rory Lewandowski is an OSU Extension Agriculture & Natural Resources Educator and may be reached at 330-264-8722.

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