An employer may pay a new employee who is younger than twenty years of age and is not a seasonal or migrant worker a training wage of at least seventy-five percent of the federal minimum wage for ninety days from the date the new employee was hired. An employer may pay such new employee the training wage rate for an additional ninety-day period while the new employee is participating in on-the-job training which (1) requires technical, personal, or other skills which are necessary for his or her employment and (2) is approved by the Commissioner of Labor. No more than one-fourth of the total hours paid by the employer shall be at the training wage rate.
An employer shall not pay the training wage rate if the hours of any other employee are reduced or if any other employee is laid off and the hours or position to be filled by the new employee is substantially similar to the hours or position of such other employee. An employer shall not dismiss or reduce the hours of any employee with the intention of replacing such employee or his or her hours with a new employee receiving the training wage rate.