National Immigration Forum

Practical Solutions for Immigrants and America

Blog & Updates

Legislative Update for May 19, 2009

May 19, 2009 - Posted by Maurice Belanger

AgJOBS re-introduced: On May 14th, Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) re-introduced the Agricultural Job Opportunities, Benefits and Security Act (AgJOBS), S. 1038 with 16 co-sponsors.  This legislation, a product of compromise between farm workers and growers and introduced in the last several Congresses, contains a path to citizenship for undocumented farm workers who have performed agricultural work and will continue to do so.  It also will reform the H-2A seasonal agricultural guest worker program.  In the House, this bipartisan bill was introduced as H.R. 2414 by Representatives Howard Berman (D-CA),  Adam Putam (R-FL), and 25 other co-sponsors.


 


You can find an outline of the bill on the Web site of United Farm Workers here:


http://www.ufw.org/_board.php?mode=view&b_code=cre_leg_back&b_no=5496


 


Senator Feinstein, in introducing the bill, laid out a persuasive case for saving American farms by fixing the untenable situation that the agricultural workforce is in today.  Her Senate floor statement can be found here:


http://www.immigrationforum.org/images/uploads/FeinsteinAgJOBSStatement.pdf


 


You can find out if your Senators or Representative have signed on to the bill, and obtain other information about AgJOBS, on our AgJOBS legislation page here:


http://www.immigrationforum.org/policy/legislation/agjobs-in-the-111th-congress


 


The Forum’s statement following re-introduction of AgJOBS can be obtained here:


http://www.immigrationforum.org/press/release-display/agjobs-reintroduction-congress-is-serious-about-immigration-reform/


 


Senate Immigration Subcommittee to hold second hearing on immigration reform: On May 20th, Senator Charles Schumer (D-NY), will be chairing another hearing in his subcommittee about immigration reform.  This one focuses on border control.  The hearing, titled “Securing the Borders and America's Points of Entry, What Remains to Be Done," will feature two panels.  The first will consist of agency witnesses.  The second will include the Mayor of Eagle Pass, Texas; the Sheriff of El Paso County, Texas; and Douglas Massey, a professor at Princeton University who has written critically of U.S. border enforcement policy.  The witness list also includes former Arizona Congressman J.D. Hayworth.  Mr. Hayworth is a victim of what we might call attrition-through-espousal-of-enforcement-only, which has led to a reduced population of immigration hard-liners in Congress over the last three election cycles.  He is currently a radio talk show host.


 


You should be able to listen to the hearing, and obtain testimony when it is available, by going to the Web page of the hearing:


http://judiciary.senate.gov/hearings/hearing.cfm?id=3859

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