A key group of lawmakers has struck a deal to double the number of visas doled out to temporary seasonal guest workers each year, suggesting a breakthrough on an immigration issue that’s bedeviled Congress for years.
The number of visas allowed would rise from 66,000 to 132,000 annually. The tradeoff is that businesses hoping to use the H-2B visa program will have to submit to strict checks on their workforce, making sure anyone hired since 2012, and those they hire going forward, are in the country legally, according to a memorandum of understanding seen by The Washington Times.
Staffers for Republican Sens. Thom Tillis of North Carolina, Charles E. Grassley of Iowa and Mike Rounds of South Dakota, as well as Rep. Andy Harris of Maryland, agreed to the terms with the H-2B Workforce Coalition and the Seasonal Employment Alliance.
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