S. 1348, The Comprehensive Immigration Reform Act of 2007 (324 comments ↓ | 13 wiki edits: view article ↓)
- This item is from the 110th Congress (2007-2008) and is no longer current. Comments, voting, and wiki editing have been disabled, and the cost/savings estimate has been frozen.
S. 1348 would provide for comprehensive immigration reform.
Comprehensive Immigration Reform Act of 2007 - Sets forth border security and enforcement provisions, including provisions respecting: (1) personnel and asset increases and enhancements; (2) a National Strategy for Border Security; (3) border security initiatives, including biometric data enhancements and a biometric entry-exit system, document integrity, and mandatory detention of aliens apprehended at or between ports of entry; (4) Central American gangs; (5) cooperation with Mexico; (6) National Guard support on the southern border; and (7) extension of the Western Hemisphere travel initiative.
Border Law Enforcement Relief Act of 2007 - Authorizes a border relief grant program for a tribal, state, or local law enforcement agency in a county: (1) no more than 100 miles from a U.S. border with Canada or Mexico; or (2) more than 100 miles from any such border but which is a high impact area.
Sets forth interior enforcement provisions, including provisions respecting: (1) alien terrorists; (2) alien street gang members; (3) illegal entry and reentry; (4) passport and immigration fraud; (5) criminal aliens; (6) voluntary departure; (7) detention and alternatives; (8) criminal penalties; (9) alien smuggling; (10) tribal lands security; (11) state and local enforcement of immigration laws; (12) expedited removal; (13) alien protection from sex offenders; and (14) the justice prisoner and alien transfer system.
Makes it unlawful to knowingly hire, recruit, or refer for a fee an unauthorized alien.
Establishes in the Treasury the Employer Compliance Fund.
Provides for additional worksite and fraud detection personnel.
Provides for a report examining the impacts of the current and proposed annual grants of legal status, including immigrant and nonimmigrant status, along with the current level of illegal immigration, on U.S. infrastructure and quality of life.
Establishes a temporary guest worker program (H-2C visa). Provides: (1) that the Secretary of Homeland Security (Secretary) shall determine H-2C eligibility; (2) for a three-year admission with one additional three-year extension; (3) issuance of H-4 nonimmigrant visas for accompanying or following spouse and children; (4) for U.S. worker protection; (5) for implementation of an alien employment management system; and (6) establishment of a Temporary Worker Task Force.
Expands the S-visa (witness/informant) classification.
Limits the L-visa (intracompany transfer) classification.
Expands the visas waiver program to include on a probationary basis a European Union (EU) country that is assisting the United States in Afghanistan or Iraq and whose participation does not compromise U.S. law enforcement interests.
Fairness in Immigration Litigation Act of 2007 - Sets forth provisions respecting remedies for immigration legislation.
Sets forth backlog reduction provisions respecting: (1) family-sponsored and employment-based immigrant levels; (2) country limits; (3) immigrant visa allocations; (4) minor children; (5) shortage occupations; (6) student and advanced degree visas; (7) children of Filipino World War II veterans; (8) powerline workers; (9) aliens of extraordinary artistic ability; and (10) Haitian children.
Securing Knowledge, Innovation, and Leadership Act of 2007 or the SKIL Act of 2007 - Exempts from the annual H-1B (specialty occupation) visa cap an alien who has: (1) earned a master's or higher degree from an accredited U.S. university; or (2) been awarded a medical specialty certification based on post-doctoral training and experience in the United States.
Revises certain: (1) student visa provisions; and (2) labor certification provisions.
Prohibits immigration application approval until background and security checks have been completed and any fraud allegations have been resolved.
Hurricane Katrina Victims Immigration Benefits Preservation Act - Authorizes special immigration status, and related benefits, for qualifying aliens who died, were disabled, or lost employment as a direct result of Hurricanes Katrina or Rita, and for certain of their family members.
Immigrant Accountability Act of 2007 - Provides permanent resident status adjustment for a qualifying illegal alien (and the spouse and children of such alien) who has been in the United States for five years and employed (with exceptions) for specified periods of time.
Authorizes mandatory departure and immigrant or nonimmigrant reentry for a qualifying illegal alien who has been present and employed in the United States since January 7, 2004. Establishes a three-year mandatory departure status, and sets forth immigration prohibitions and penalties for failure to depart or delayed departure.
Directs the Secretary of Health and Human Services to establish a state impact assistance grant program to provide health and education services to noncitizens.
Agricultural Job Opportunities, Benefits, and Security Act of 2007, or AgJOBS Act of 2007 - Establishes a pilot program (Blue Card program) for adjustment to permanent resident status of qualifying agricultural workers who have worked in the United States during the two-year period ending December 31, 2005, and have been employed for specified periods of time subsequent to enactment of this Act.
Revises the H-2A (temporary agricultural worker) program.
Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors Act of 2007 or the DREAM Act of 2007 - Eliminates denial of an unlawful alien's eligibility for higher education benefits based on state residence unless a U.S. national is similarly eligible without regard to such state residence. Authorizes cancellation of removal and adjustment to conditional permanent resident status of certain alien students who are long-term U.S. residents.
Sets forth the conditions for a six-year conditional permanent resident status.
Authorizes the Assistant Attorney General, Office of Justice Programs, to award grants to qualified nonprofit community organizations to educate and support nonprofit agencies, immigrant communities, and other interested entities regarding the provisions of this Act.
Strengthening American Citizenship Act of 2007 - Directs: (1) the Chief of the Office of Citizenship of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to provide grants to assist legal U.S. residents who declare an intent to apply for citizenship in the United States to meet naturalization requirements; and (2) the Secretary to establish an American citizenship grant program for qualified entities to provide civics, history, and English classes to promote the patriotic integration of prospective citizens.
Authorizes the Secretary of State to award a grant to a U.S. land grant university to establish a university-based Mexican rural poverty mitigation program.
Sets forth provisions respecting: (1) additional DHS and Department of Justice immigration personnel; and (2) the Board of Immigration Appeals.
Kendell Frederick Citizenship Assistance Act - Provides that fingerprints provided by a qualifying individual at the time of military enlistment shall satisfy naturalization fingerprint requirements.
Requires the Secretary to establish a toll-free naturalization assistance telephone number for Armed Forces members and their families.
State Court Interpreter Grant Program Act - Provides state courts grants to assist individuals with limited English proficiency to access and understand court proceedings, and allocates funds for a related court interpreter technical assistance program.
Border Infrastructure and Technology Modernization Act - Provides for: (1) a port of entry infrastructure assessment study; (2) a national land border security plan; (3) a port of entry technology demonstration program; and (4) expansion the Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism programs along the northern and southern borders.
September 11 Family Humanitarian Relief and Patriotism Act - Provides permanent resident status adjustment or cancellation of removal and permanent resident status adjustment for a qualifying alien who was on September 10, 2001, the wife, child, or dependent son or daughter of a lawful nonimmigrant alien who died as a result of the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks against the United States.
Sets forth provisions respecting: (1) noncitizen Armed Forces membership; (2) surveillance programs, including aerial and unmanned aerial surveillance; (3) a Northern Border Prosecution Initiative; (4) reimbursement of Southern Border State and county prosecutors for prosecuting federally initiated drug cases; (5) screening of municipal waste; (6) border security on federal land; and (7) parole and status adjustment relief for qualifying widows and orphans.
Initial Entry, Adjustment, and Citizenship Assistance Grant Act of 2007 - Authorizes the Secretary to award initial entry, status adjustment, and citizenship assistance grants to qualifying community-based organizations.
Amends the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004 to extend the travel document plan deadline.
States that English is the national language of the United States. Requires the government to preserve and enhance the role of English as the national language of the United States.
Amends the Homeland Security Act of 2002 to establish the Office of Internal Corruption Investigation.
Directs the Secretary to adjust to permanent resident status specified asylee applicants who are members of a persecuted religious minority.
Intercountry Adoption Reform Act of 2007 or the ICARE Act - Establishes an Office of Intercountry Adoptions within the Department of State to be headed by the Ambassador at Large for Intercountry Adoptions.
Sets forth Office functions, including: (1) approval of family to adopt (divided into U.S. regions); (2) child adjudication; (3) family services; (4) international policy development; and (5) administration and enforcement.
Revises provisions for automatic citizenship for children born outside the United States, including adopted children.
Establishes a nonimmigrant W-visa for an adoptable child coming to the United States for adoption by a U.S. citizen and spouse jointly or by an unmarried U.S. citizen at least 25 years of age who has been approved by the Office of International Adoption of the Department of State.
Sets forth adoption-related enforcement and penalty provisions.
Status of the Legislation
5/21/2007: "Grand bargain": Senate Amendment 1150 by Ted Kennedy largely rewrites text. See kennedy.senate.gov
6/7/2007: Sen. Reid pulls bill from the Senate floor (for time being) after cloture motion fails.
Points in Favor
Provided by www.immigrationvoice.org
From the legal standpoint, the employment-based green card process is badly broken. It imposes great costs on industry and subjects the best and brightest of the world to unconscionable delays and career stagnation. Organizations like http://www.immigrationvoice.org are working hard to represent high skilled immigrants in DC.
This is a big crisis occurring with EB green cards. Because these visas are distributed equally among all countries, with a quota set for each country, backlogs have resulted for individuals coming from high-demand countries, even when the overall cap has not been reached and regardless of the fact that these high-demand countries are often the only source of individuals capable of filling high-skilled jobs American businesses need. Once the quota is met for nationals of a given country, only those who applied before a set cut-off date are able to get visas. The rest are forced to spend up to seven years waiting, unable to become true stakeholders in our country, putting their lives on hold in the hopes that a green card will eventually become available to them. Not surprisingly, these talented professionals often tire of waiting and leave the U.S. to put their knowledge and skills to use in other countries eager to compete with and surpass the U.S.
The EB visa programs is a vital tool necessary to keep the U.S. economy competitive in the world market and to keep jobs in America. Far from harming U.S. workers and the U.S. economy, highly educated foreign professionals benefit our country by allowing U.S. employers to develop new products, undertake groundbreaking research, implement new projects, expand operations, create additional new jobs, and compete in the global marketplace. As President Bush has remarked, if these professionals are not permitted to come to the U.S. to share their expertise, they will go to other countries and benefit companies abroad instead. The end result will be American jobs lost and American projects losing out to foreign competition, with devastating long-term consequences for the U.S. economy. Immediate action is needed to resolve this problem.
Provided by www.immigrationvoice.org
The US senate has taken up the immigration bill S 1348 for comprehensive immigration reform. The bill reduces the number of green cards for EB1, EB2 and EB3 categories from 140,000 to 90,000 for the first 5 years and introduces a new points based merit system.
This bill in its current form would not provide any relief to our members stuck in retrogression and labor backlogs. It would also make H1 renewals difficult, especially if your labor certification is either pending or not filed yet. Please click here to see the adverse effects of this bill analyzed by Immigration Voice. For complete analysis of all sections of this bill regarding skilled immigration, click here.
Immigration Voice opposes this bill in its current form.
If we fail to amend this bill and if it becomes a law, then retrogression will increase, dates on visa bulletin would move in reverse direction and H1B renewals will face newer challenges.
Increasing immigration further aggravates the problem with the electoral system in the US since both the electorate and the number of House seats are based on the Census figures which includes both citizens and non-citizens, including illegal aliens.
Unlike most nations, many parts of the United States do not require identification beyond an envelope with your address and a statement that you are a citizen to vote.
The majority of immigrants, illegal or otherwise in the U.S. are from Mexico. Since there is a US/Mexico Totalization agreement on social security, legal immigrants from Mexico, are entitled to benefits from the US after meeting minimal requirements, less requirements then U.S. citizens. This is a bigger problem because all other countries that the U.S. has totalization agreements with have a more equal balance of citizens migrating. In the case of Mexico it is almost entirely from Mexico to the U.S.
The US has historically had a family based immigration policy. While this bill shifts that somewhat it has increased the number of total immigrations, giving family based many more, the net effect is that the system is still largely family based. This coupled with a policy that any baby born in the U.S. is a U.S. citizen means if a immigrant, legal or otherwise, gives birth to a child, members of the family can apply for immigration and ultimately citizenship based upon the baby.
The majority of States and local governments, especially those with large populations, have a policy of not verifying immigration status or citizenship. Thus, those illegal immigrants that are not reputable have often committed multiple offenses by the time they are caught and deported.
While the U.S. does have prosperity, there is also a wide income gap that is getting wider. The tax bracket over the past 20 years or so has shifted from the highest and lowest income receivers to the middle income receivers. As immigration has increased some native minorities have had increased level of unemployment and poverty.
The U.S. provides a K-12 education to any child in the country for free. The immigration or citizenship status of the child does not matter. Further schools receiving federal funding must provide resources for the student to learn English, learn at their grade level, interpreters to communicate with parents, information in the language of the parents etc.
Although there are many other issues, these few items within the complicated social system and political system of the U.S. provides insight to the reader of why U.S. citizens are against the provisions in this bill. Politicians, business, and special interest groups do fashion bills without the citizens involvement that are not in the best interest of either the citizens or the country.
win (May 19, 2007, 01:58:29)~
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