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HUMAN RESOURCES

Immigration Bill Could Affect Business Owners

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July 21, 2005--For business owners, immigration policies aren't a clear-cut issue. On the one hand, foreign workers can be immensely helpful to a business. On the other, many oppose the lax enforcement of immigration laws, which raises concerns about terrorism.

On Tuesday, border-state Republican senators John Kyl of Arizona and John Cornyn of Texas introduced a bill to increase border patrol and regulate foreign workers. "The single most important aspect of this bill is that it does not reward those who have broken the law, and does not constitute amnesty," Kyl said in a statement.

Should it pass, the bill would heavily affect some business owners. It would raise the number of agents investigating illegal-alien employment by 10,000, require all new hires to be verified by a Social Security-based screening system within a year, require the issuance of tamper-resistant Social Security cards within a years, and reduce the number of documents workers can present for ID verification.

It also would establish a temporary-worker program, where foreigners could enter the U.S. to work if no U.S. citizens could fill the jobs. Alien workers would be limited to two-year stints, after which they'd have to return home for a year, and could only take advantage of the program three times. Health and background checks and biometric scans would be required of all participants.

Last updated: Jul 20, 2005




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