Pastoral Award 2010 – the basics
The Pastoral Award 2010 is a modern award created under the Fair Work Act. It commenced operation on 1 January 2010 and applies to all national system employers.
As of 1 January 2010, the only federal award which applies to the dairy industry is federal Pastoral Award 2010. However, there are special rules about when that award applies which depend on your business structure and award coverage as at 1 January 2010.
- If your business was run by a company or a trust with a company as trustee as at 1 January 2010, the Pastoral Award 2010 applies to you as of that date regardless of which award covered you before then and regardless of whether you were award free.
- If your business is not in Western Australia and is run by a sole trader, a partnership or trust which does not have a company trustee and was award free as at 1 January 2010, the Pastoral Award 2010 applies to you as of that date.
- If your business is not in Western Australia and is run by a sole trader, a partnership or trust which does not have a company trustee and if your business was covered by a state award, and you employed employees as of 1 January 2010, the state award continued to apply until the end of the full pay period commencing before 1 February 2011. After that time the modern Pastoral Award 2010 applies but there are transitional arrangements. You are called a state transitional employer or Division 2B employer.
- If your business is not in Western Australia and is run by a sole trader, a partnership or trust which does not have a company trustee and if your business was covered by the federal Pastoral Industry Award 1998 as a transitional employer as at 1 January 2010, you are bound by the modern Pastoral Award 2010 as of 1 January 2010.
||There are however transitional arrangements relating to pay and other entitlements. For more information go to transitional arrangements.
All non national system dairy farmers in Western Australia will be award free. This is because the Pastoral Industry Award 1998 ceased to operate as of 26 March 2011.
If you want to know more about which award applies to your business go to Which award?
National system employers should also refer to the National Employment Standards to understand how this impacts upon their application of this award.
There must be a copy of the award at the workplace
||The Pastoral Award 2010 requires employers to keep a copy of the award on a noticeboard at or near the workplace or electronically, whichever is more easily accessible by employees.
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Hours of work
Under the Pastoral Award 2010 ordinary hours are 152 hours worked over a four-week period. Ordinary hours for casuals are the same as for full-time employees.
There are minimum hours of work for all part-time and casual employees.
For part-time employees the award specifies that the employer must roster the employee for a minimum of 3 hours on any shift.
For casual employees the award specifies that on each occasion the casual attends for work they are entitled to a minimum payment of 3 hours work.
Once the 152 hours have been worked, overtime is at the rate of time and a half for all hours worked with double time being paid for any work done on Sundays. Feeding and watering stock on Sundays is paid at the rate of time and one half. Milking is not regarded as 'feeding and watering stock'.
Alternatively, the employee can elect to take time off duty with pay for a period equal to the overtime worked.
Overtime for casual employees is calculated the same way as for permanent employees. That is, overtime is not payable until 152 hours have been worked in a 4-week period regardless of the day the work is performed.
Part-time employees must be paid overtime rates for all work performed in excess of the agreed part-time hours.
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Classifications and pay rates
The federal Pastoral Award 2010 creates five separate classifications for dairy farm employees with different rates of pay for each classification.
The classifications reflect the experience and skills of employees.
The classifications are:
- dairy operator grade 1A (farm and livestock hand level 1 - FLH1)
- dairy operator grade 1B (farm and livestock hand level 3 - FLH3)
- dairy operator grade 2 (farm and livestock hand level 5 - FLH5)
- senior dairy operator grade 1 (farm and livestock hand level 7 - FLH7)
- senior dairy operator grade 2 (farm and livestock hand level 8 - FLH8).
Determining employee classifications and pay rates
||More details on classifications and the latest pay rates can be found on the pay rates page.
Download our FAQ on Tackling pay rates.
For pay rates for trainees go to http://www.airc.gov.au/awardmod/databases/ntw/Modern/NTW.pdf.
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Public holidays are provided for in the National Employment Standards (NES).
In addition to the NES, the Pastoral Award 2010 provides for farm and livestock hands to receive double time if they work on a public holiday.
If a public holiday falls when an employee is on annual leave, the employee is taken not to be on paid annual leave on that day. Instead the NES about public holidays will apply and the employee will be entitled to be paid for the public holiday at the employee's base rate of pay for ordinary hours of work.
Substitution of other days
The Pastoral Award 2010 allows for employers and individual employees or employers and the majority of employees to agree to substitute an alternative day for the public holiday.
Annual leave is provided for in the National Employment Standards.
The Pastoral Award 2010 provides for the employee to be paid the wages they would have received for ordinary hours had they not been on annual leave. The Pastoral Award 2010 also provides for annual leave payment to be made before the employee goes on leave.
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Annual leave loading
In addition to the NES the Pastoral Award 2010 provides for payment of a 17.5% annual leave loading for all annual leave which is taken as leave or paid out upon termination of employment.
Directing employees to take annual leave
The Pastoral Award 2010 provides for employers to direct employees who have at least 8 weeks accrued annual leave to take ¼ or less of their accrued annual leave.
Before requiring the employee to take annual leave the employer must have genuinely tried to reach an agreement about the employee taking the leave.
Employers must give employees at least 4 weeks notice of the requirement to take the annual leave.
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Personal/carer’s leave and compassionate leave
Personal/carer’s leave and compassionate leave are a part of the National Employment Standards.
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Meal breaks and rest breaks
Under the Fair Work laws meal breaks and rest breaks are an award requirement.
The Pastoral Award 2010 provides for:
- An unpaid meal break of not less than 30 minutes and not more than one hour to be taken not later than 5 hours after commencement of work.
All work performed during a recognised meal break must be paid at double time rates with the payment continuing until the employee receives the meal break.
- A paid rest break of at least 10 minutes each morning.
The employer and the individual employee can agree that the meal break be taken at another time.
If employers and employees agree, a further unpaid rest break can be taken in the afternoon.
Award-free employees should also be provided with rest breaks as part of an appropriate occupational heath and safety system in the workplace.
It is suggested that the award provisions outlined above should also be applied for non-award employees.
Notice of termination
The National Employment Standards provide for notice of termination.
In addition to the NES, the Pastoral Award 2010 provides for employees to give the same amount of notice as employers and if they fail to give notice, employers can deduct money from the employee’s termination payments.
However, employees do not have to give the additional week of notice based on the age of the employee and length of service.
Job search entitlement
Where an employer has given an employee notice of termination, the employee is entitled to take one day off without loss of pay to look for other work. The employee can take the day off at a time when it is convenient to the employee after consultation with the employer,
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Individual Flexibility Agreements
Every modern Award must include a ‘flexibility term’ which enables employers and employees to agree to vary the effect of some award terms and put in place conditions of work which are tailor-made to suit the needs of their business and their employees. This is called an Individual Flexibility Agreement (IFA).
Because Individual Flexibility Agreements stand in the place of the award terms which they modify, employers cannot be liable in the future for payment of those award entitlements.
The Fair Work Act ensures these arrangements do not undermine minimum employee entitlements by requiring the employer to ensure the employee covered by the IFA is 'better off overall' on the IFA compared to the modern award.
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To lessen the financial impact of the new award terms on employers and employees, the Pastoral Award 2010 contains transitional provisions which allow increases and decreases in minimum conditions affecting pay to be phased in. The transitional rates apply for a five-year period from the first full pay period after 1 July 2010.
Calculating transitional pay rates
As of 1 July 2010 there are two main changes to pay rates under the Pastoral Award 2010.
- The transitional provisions which are a part of the award began to apply to phase in pay rates, loadings and penalty rates over the next 5 years.
- As of the first full pay period on or after 1 July 2012 the minimum wage for each classification in the Pastoral Award 2010 increased by 2.9% per week.
Note: if you were already paying above the award rate for the particular classification, you do not have to pay the increase.
These changes apply to all employers who are bound by the Pastoral Award 2010.
Note: The transitional provisions do not apply to overtime. Overtime rates apply to all employers as of 1 January 2010.
How do I work out the transitional pay rates?
The transitional provisions in the award provide for a phasing in of pay rate increases over a five-year period until 2014 at the rate of 20% per year.
Transitional pay rates are calculated by:
- Taking the pre-modern award rate
- Taking the modern award rate (Pastoral Award 2010)
- Calculating the transitional amount = modern award rate minus pre-modern award rate
- Calculating 40% of transitional amount
- Taking the new award rate (the rate inclusive of the increase as of 1 July 2012)
- Calculating the transitional wage rate for this classification (from first pay period after 1 July 2012) = new award rate minus 40% of the transitional amount
Which pre-modern award applied to my business?
Pastoral Industry Award 1998
The Pastoral Industry Award 1998 applied to employers who were respondents to the Pastoral Industry Award 1998 either as individual named respondents or as members of an association. See Awards.
State awards which applied to employers who run their business as a company or with a trust with a company trustee as of 26 March 2006. The state awards became NAPSAs under the WorkChoices laws.
Division 2B awards
State awards which applied to employers who run their business as a sole trader or partnership or a trust with a trustee which is not a company as at 1 January 2010. The state award became a Division 2B award under the Fair Work laws.
To find out transitional pay rates for 2012–2013 for people employed by your business select the option below that applied to your business as at 1 January 2010:
How do I work out the transitional loadings and penalty rates?
Loadings and penalty rates phase in or out in the same way. That is, they phase in or out at the rate of 20% per year for the next 5 years.
For example, in Queensland there was never a state minimum for public holiday pay. The Pastoral Award 2010 specifies double time for work on public holidays.
Therefore, for dairy farmers in Queensland, over the next 5 years the double time component will phase in at the rate of 20% per year as follows:
Important note for employers in Queensland
As at 1 July 2010 there was uncertainty as to whether sole traders and partnerships in Queensland come into the federal system as of 1 January 2010 could take advantage of the transitional provisions about pay rates. This has now been clarified by the Fair Work Commissionand the award has been varied to make it clear that these employers are entitled to the same phasing in arrangements as companies.
As a result there are different rates for dairy farmers in Queensland depending on whether they run their business with a company or as a sole trader or partnership.
For more information
Your state dairy farming organisation can also provide information on transitional pay arrangements
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