The annual allocation of H-2B Visas will now be increased to 132,000. This is almost a double increase from the existing allocation of 66,000. A deal has been finalized by a group of GOP US Lawmakers in this regard. This indicates a breakthrough in the contentious immigration issue.
The H-2B Visas are for Temporary Seasonal Guest Workers from overseas. US Media reports have confirmed this update based on a Memorandum of Understanding that they have accessed.
The agreement also outlines guidelines for US businesses intending to use H-2B Visas. They are required to furnish strict checks for the workers that they hire. It must be ensured by the businesses that the workers that they plan to hire and those hired after 2012 are present legally in the US.
The consenting staffers of the deal include those for Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, and Sens. Thom Tillis. It also includes Rep. Andy Harris, R-Md., as quoted by the News Max. This is outlined in the Seasonal Employment Alliance – H-2B Workforce Coalition.
Daniel Keylin spokesman for Tillis said that there is a broad bipartisan agreement for seasonal small businesses. It also is inclusive of the workers that they employ. Development is on for reaching a fair compromise, added Keylin.
The US Lawmakers expect to attach the proposal to the spending bill that must be passed.
The H-2B Visas numbers peaked in the year 2017 when 130,000 were offered. The numbers lowered to less than 45,000 just 2 years later in 2009. The figures again increased to 83,000 and 85,000 in 2016 and 2017 respectively.
The support of Grassley could be vital as he is the Judiciary Committee’s Chairman. He was highly critical of the decision of the US Congress to increase these visas in the last 2 years.
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