TO:    Reporters and Editors
RE:    the Fairness for High-Skilled Immigrants Act, H.R. 3012
DA:    Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Senator Chuck Grassley today put the following statement in The Congressional Record regarding lifting his hold on H.R. 3012, the Fairness for High-Skilled Immigrants Act.
Mr. President,

Today, I lift my hold on H.R. 3012, the Fairness for High-Skilled Immigrants Act.  This bill would eliminate the per-country numerical limitations for employment–based immigrants and change the per-country numerical limitations for family-based immigrants.  When I placed a hold on the bill, I was concerned that the bill did nothing to better protect Americans at home who seek high-skilled jobs during this time of record unemployment.  Today, I lift my hold because I have reached an agreement with the senior Senator from New York, the Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Immigration, Refugees and Border Security.

I’ve spent a lot of time and effort into rooting out fraud and abuse in our visa programs, specifically the H-1B visa program.  I have always said this program can and should serve as a benefit to our country, our economy and our U.S. employers.   However, it is clear that it’s not working as intended, and the program is having a detrimental effect on American workers.

For many years, Senator Durbin and I have worked on legislation to close the loopholes in the H-1B visa program.  Our legislation would ensure that American workers are afforded the first chance to obtain the available high paying and high skilled jobs in the United States.  It would make sure visa holders know their rights.  It would strengthen the wage requirements, ridding the incentives for companies to hire cheap, foreign labor.

While I couldn’t get everything that was included in the Durbin-Grassley visa reform bill, there is agreement to include in H.R. 3012 provisions that give greater authority to program overseers to investigate visa fraud and abuse.  Specifically, there will be language authorizing the Department of Labor to better review labor condition applications and investigate fraud and misrepresentation by employers.  There’s also agreement to include a provision allowing the federal government to do annual compliance audits of employers who bring in foreign workers through the H-1B visa program.

I appreciate the willingness of other members to work with me to include measures that will help us combat visa fraud, and ultimately protect more American workers.  I look forward to working with others as H.R. 3012 progresses in the Senate.

I yield the floor.

Learn more about HR 3012

  • rajarshi ray

    i guess it will be bad for the growth of india. this guy is encouraging brain drain passively.

  • munna

    annual compliance audit is a bit tricky for those people who apply for H-1B thru desi consultancy etc.

    • HSB

      Isn’t it good in one way?

      • vish

        Its tricky only for companies who engage in fraudulent activities. I know of a number of desi consultancies who routinely edit (read FORGE) documents especially client documents to get H1B visas. Even the employee-employer relationship documents are all fraud in most cases. I know friends who work for consultancies and the consultancy companies have no clue of what they do. The annual reviews are filled by my friends for themselves and for the managers part too.

      • vish

        @HSB: It’s not good, it’s very good.

  • vish

    This (HR 3012) is the best thing that could happen to Indians in the US for decades.

    Also worth highlighting is the fact that it may help reduce visa frauds by additional audits etc.

    The only people not liking the bill are A lot of Indian Body shops & AILA. Audit provisions make it more difficult for those body shops to do frauds. & AILA members won’t be able to make tons of money coz PERM aspirants and/or employers have to keep paying a lot of money to the attorneys for renewals, extensions etc etc while waiting for the Green cards.

    This may also help the US economy as many people like me won’t buy home until we get green card.

  • http://iCosmoGeek.com Avinash Kumpati

    Chuck Grassley is the senator of IOWA. Please correct me if I am wrong.

    • vish

      Yes, you are right, he is senator of IOWA.