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  • imm_pro
    05-15 11:15 PM
    This is awsome..also on the newsdesk..:):):):):)

    Feinstein, Lofgren use Iraq spending bill to push for guest-worker program

    05-15) 19:18 PDT Washington - -- Two of California's most immigrant-dependent industries - agriculture and Silicon Valley - are pushing narrow measures through Congress in an effort to employ foreign workers at opposite ends of the labor market, people who pick vegetables and the postgraduate engineers and scientists of Silicon Valley.

    Sen. Dianne Feinstein attached a farm guest-worker program to the giant Iraq spending bill today in a last-ditch effort to remedy a shortage of workers in California's produce fields as the federal government continues to crack down on illegal immigration and the political climate proves hostile to more sweeping measures.

    Rep. Zoe Lofgren, D-San Jose, teaming with Republicans, is pushing several bills to give permanent residence to top engineering talent.

    "It's an emergency," Feinstein said of the farm worker situation. "If you can't get people to prune, to plant, to pick, to pack, you can't run a farm."

    Her addition to the Iraq spending bill would give temporary legal status to 1.3 million farm workers over the next five years, but it would provide no path to citizenship or permanent residency. It passed the Senate Appropriations Committee 17 to 12 today.

    Workers applying for the program would have to prove they had worked on U.S. farms for at least 150 days or 863 hours, or had earned at least $17,000, during the last four years. They would have to remain working in agriculture for the next five years, when the program would expire.

    The move marks an end for now to efforts to give farm workers a path to citizenship after a sweeping immigration bill crashed in the Senate last June. Feinstein has been trying all year to attach a bill called AgJobs but has met nothing but dead-ends.

    Western Growers, representing California farmers, and the United Farm Workers of American union joined in backing the bill. Western Growers President Tom Nassif said large growers are accelerating efforts to move their farming operations to Mexico. The 15 growers out of several hundred who responded to a survey and were willing to talk about their plans moved 84,000 acres worth of crop production to Mexico this year, twice as many acres as last year, Nassif said.

    "Once the acreage moves to Mexico, it's there permanently," Nassif said. "Much of the remaining open space in California is agricultural land. If it's not farmed, we'd be growing condos or cementing it over with office buildings."

    The tightening of the border has made it increasingly difficult, dangerous and expensive for laborers to return to the United States if they leave, disrupting the traditional circular flow of farm workers from Mexico to California's fields in the Salinas and Central valleys. Most farm workers arrive illegally, and farmers complain that an existing guest worker program called H2A is cumbersome and ineffective. Feinstein's bill would streamline that program's rules.

    Growers are apprehensive about a new administration effort, temporarily stopped by a federal court, that would require employers to match workers with a valid Social Security number or be heavily fined. The Department of Homeland Security is refining the rule to get past court objections.

    United Farmworkers President Arturo Rodriguez said farming is facing "a very real emergency" and applauded the bill as a "critical but temporary fix to a much larger problem."

    Feinstein acknowledged that the chances of getting the bill all the way through Congress, even attached to war spending, is "uphill all the way."

    On the other side of the Capitol, Rep. Zoe Lofgren, D-San Jose, is teaming with conservative Republicans to try to push similar discreetly targeted measures for Silicon Valley. She has dropped efforts for now to expand the controversial H-1B program for temporary high-skilled workers, which again this year ran out of its 85,000 visas on the first day they were released. Lofgren said the program needs changes, given its wide use by Indian offshoring companies.

    Instead, Lofgren has introduced a passel of five small-bore immigration bills, among them one that would allow masters' and doctoral graduates from U.S. universities to apply immediately for permanent residence, skipping the H-1B program altogether.

    "Most people would agree if you get your Ph.D in engineering from an American university, you've got something to offer this country," Lofgren said. "Right now, we have no ability to keep those people here ... we send them home to compete against Americans. It would make more sense to keep them here to help us compete."

    Lofgren has even teamed up on one bill, to "recapture" unused permanent resident slots, with Rep. James Sensenbrenner, the Wisconsin Republican famous as the author of immigration crackdown legislation, never enacted, that was so harsh it led to the nation's first large-scale Latino protests in 2006.

    "What's happened is that with the shortage of very high-level people, multinational companies are sending their project teams offshore," Lofgren said. "Not only the top hot-shot leading the team, but all the support jobs that go with that hot shot. Among the people I've met is a guy who spent four years at Harvard, seven at Stanford's engineering school, then did practical training and has been here six years on an H1B, and he's in limbo. He's an extremely talented person and has no idea what his future is going to be. He's being recruited in Australia and Europe, and he's ready to bail out. What he needs is not more temporary time."

    Members of the Silicon Valley Leadership Group of business executives spent Thursday lobbying Congress on high-skilled immigration and tax breaks for solar energy and research and development.

    "This is no time to say to high-skilled workers in a global economy that we don't want you," said Barry Cinnamon, chief executive of Akeena Solar in Los Gatos. "We're happy to have that argument with anyone."

    E-mail Carolyn Lochhead at clochhead@sfchronicle.com

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  • whitecollarslave
    02-08 02:52 PM
    I'm not sure it will be taken up by AILA -- I was so surprised by the resistance I encountered when I asked a well known attorney with a blog (v. popular with IV members) to submit this question to the AILA committee which reviews topics for liason meetings, and it took several rounds of email and some very severe rhetoric from me to even get him to send it to the committee! I feel it is terrible that our self-professed advocates hesitate even to ASK a question, let alone propose specific reforms...

    The deadline for submitting questions is Feb 15 -- so if you are interested, get in touch with your attorneys and send in the question. Maybe numbers will move them.

    Can you provide some more information on the AILA liaison meetings? Excuse my ignorance but I have never heard of it before.

    Can we ask AILA to support the letter campaign? Specifically, can we ask AILA to push for recapturing 218K unused visas and clarification on how they might be allocated, if recaptured?


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  • mambarg
    07-24 07:08 PM
    My attorney uses Fedex and we get receipts on time.
    I would recommend to use Fedex instead of UPS.

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  • Redeye
    04-10 10:58 AM
    But look at this from Prashanthi Reddy.


    I am presently on H1-B and filed I-140 and I-485 under Exceptional Ability & National Interest Waiver category, I got EAD (I-765) approval also;, can I do any part time job by using EAD as well as maintaining my H1-B status?
    Yes you can, as long as you continue to work for the employer that has sponsored you for the Green Card.

    I want to solid answer if possible no gray area type answers. I am done with gray areas. After 6 years of wait last thing I want is gray area :) that is reason why I posted.


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  • Ramba
    09-16 01:20 PM
    The GC is based on good faith intention to have a permanent long term employer-employee relationship between sponsor and beneficiary. There is no prescribed time period to define �permanent� or �long term� in any law book. Each lawyer has their own interpretation. As most of the GC is thro sponsors, the sponsors has more power. If sponsor can able to successfully demonstrate to USCIS that beneficiary had a bogus intension to have a permanent emeplyer-employemet relationship, used employer just to get GC, then it may be a problem that leads to revocation of GC too. This is mostly possible in future employment category peoples. If any one worked for long term with sponsor before (or after) getting GC, then it is difficult for sponsor to demonstrate to USCIS that beneficiary had a bogus intension to have a permanent emeplyer-employemet relationship. Further, as AC21 gives 180 days as a time period for changing employment, 6 month period (either before or after getting GC) may be sufficient to work for sponsor.

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  • karthiknv143
    04-13 05:19 PM
    How long does it take to write a bill? Wow.. Immediately after the mad rush for H1, there is a bill out in just 10days to give the relief. Guess the bill must have been written well-ahead anticipating the reality.


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  • GCapplicant
    06-30 01:14 PM
    Thanks pappu...

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  • mdipi0
    11-17 09:56 PM
    ok,,,this is mine. but...i never signed up. i know i didnt....weird.


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  • devikas81
    06-16 10:06 PM
    EB2 India..My 140 has been approved in May.07, also got EAD/AP but my employer doesnt want to give me Receipt Notice or Approval Notice of 140... So can i leave this company and join different company...
    Pls. advise

    Company gave the Receipt Number when they filed 140 but not sure whether that receipt number is belong to my case or not..??

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  • zico123
    05-17 01:53 PM
    According to BBC:
    Link: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/6667257.stm

    The White House and the US Senate have reached a deal on an immigration bill that could give legal status to many of the 12m illegal immigrants in the US.

    Democratic Senator Edward Kennedy confirmed the agreement that would also establish a merit-based system for future migrants.

    US President George W Bush is expected to endorse the bill, which strengthens border controls, Mr Kennedy said.

    The proposal comes after months of bitterly fought debate over the issue.

    Points system

    After first paying visa fees and a $5,000 (�2,530) fine - and returning to their home country - illegal immigrants in the US would be eligible for the planned "Z visa".

    Holders of this proposed visa would have to wait between eight and 13 years for a decision on their permanent residency application.

    Another key component of the deal was the establishment of a "points system" that would emphasise new immigrants' education, language and job skills over family connections in awarding green cards.

    New limits would also apply to US citizens bringing foreign-born parents into the country.

    The bill also establishes a two-year temporary guest worker visa.

    Holders of this visa would be allowed to renew their papers twice, but would have to return home for a year between each stint, and would have virtually no chance of gaining permanent residency or citizenship under this program.

    The bill is expected to cause passionate debate in the Senate next week.

    Immigration reform has been one of Mr Bush's top priorities in government, after the so-called "war on terror".


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  • fullerene
    06-30 09:11 AM
    CIR is dead and DOS is trying to revise its VB. these two are good news from some aspects. They will help us to concentrate our focus on strategy. Here are some of my suggestions:

    1) We may have limited power to speak out alone. But we can unify all groups, parties or sources which will benefit our strategy, such like business group, AILA/AILF, Ombudsman of USCIS, some media reporters and capitol hill insiders.

    2) Short term strategy - To revise petition process
    a) I/140 and I/485 are the continous steps of the process for imigration petition. Right now. they are broken by VB. Applicants with approved I140 should file petition right away.

    b) Following Ombudsman's suggestion included in his 2007 report, we shall suggest that the visa number shall be issued within 180 days of the processing window regardless the visa number availability and conclusion of the name check. The procedure chance will significantly improve the VB predition and limit the waste of visa numbers or revision of the VB during the middle of the month.

    c) Started with new fees, the application of I-485 will be a package including AP and EAD. The renewal of AP and EAD will be removed during the pending of I-485. Then following the suggestion b, we shall request USCIS to provide a case process report after 180 days indicating the status of the process if it can not be concluded within 180 days.( reasons maybe name check or visa availability). Furthermore, USCIS shall have temporary green cards for the applicants whose applications have been approved but the green cards could not be issued due to other reasons as mentioned above. and teh temporary green cards shall be renewed peroidically or be replaced by formal cards if everything is clear.

    d) name check shall be concluded within a reasonable time window. Otherwise name check won't be a sense. Generally speaking, people with a longer history will take more time to complete the process and people with all documentations will take more time to complete it compared with illegal ones since they don't have any records at FBI. Also validation will be questioned if the process takes too long. If the process takes three years, so how to make sure that there is nothing during these three years? Also most of us report our status faithfully, have inspections when re-entering the states.

    e) In order to avoiding wasting visas, USCIS shall have some time to complete the previous year's visa left-over, such as first 2 monthes.

    3) Long term strategy- flexible visa cap according to market requirements

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  • sravani
    05-11 06:00 PM
    here is another questions I need to ask, if anyone can plz get them answered it will be great.

    1. There was I-94 attached which was also lost. Recently, we transferred H-4 to iGate, so Uscis sent i-94 with approval notice, would that work or we need to get apply form 102 for replacement? Also, is there a way to notify uscis that i-94 is lost and will reapply once we get to ?

    It's important to keep the arrival i-94 document. You can use the following document to get the I-94 from Department of Homeland Security.



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  • hopefulgc
    03-31 10:49 AM
    Any word on this issue? Is somebody from core going to create a forum where they can post delayed updates?

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  • meridiani.planum
    02-22 11:03 AM
    Hello I am on H1B visa, I am going to India, not to return to US, at least for 3 or 4 years. I wanted to know If my checking, savings account's in US Banks will be valid or not? If so until what period? When do my SSN will expire? I dont plant to open any new accounts, but I just want to keep my Bank accounts open, thats why. Please let me know.

    If the reason you are trying to keep the accounts open is because you want to maintain some money in dollars, one option is to open an FCNR account with some Indian bank (SBI for instance). They'll keep your deposit in dollars, and it also remains repatriable (in case you decide that you want that money when in India). The interest rates are also not that bad.

    Accounts without any activity are typically marked inactive by banks and they'll try to contact you about it (after ~2 years or so). One workaround is to do online transfers among the bank accounts.

    One thing though: your money will be earning interest in the US so you would want to ask a tax consultant whether there is any tax implication of this (ie. are you required to file a return)


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  • uma001
    05-07 10:30 AM
    May I know on what basis you are recommending this. Do you have any legal basis.?

    What do you mean by legal basis. He agreed to pay $2 to company A (in email) until the project ends. If this is correct, he should continue paying $2 to company A. Since the OP stopped paying $2 , company A wants to make sure that the project ended.

    Ofcourse, Since thee is no contract or agreement between company A and OP, no need to pay $2. But that is not fair on his part. Company A is not asking for 25-40% from billing, He just asked for $2 per hour.

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  • tb2904
    03-26 08:43 PM
    Not sure if an "independent" consultant on H1B can make more than 250K. Considering he is working 2080 hours in a year. He has to get $120/hour for himself + his employer cut. In 2000, you could have demanded those rates....but, now days I doubt.

    Consultant - Travelling job


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  • bheemi
    04-03 09:56 AM
    HI Admin,
    I would like to know if IV is working on ability to file I485 dureing retrogression...if so can youc alrify us how would you proceed for this issue...an ammendement thru somebody...Just want to know..


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  • franklin
    11-16 08:06 PM
    One friend of mine get his GC in the end of September/07 after filing AOS concurrently with I 140 in a middle of June 2007! His PD was Aug.2004(EB3-ROW)

    Your friend was a lucky one (like me) who got a visa number allocated very quickly in that brief window. It was relatively rare, and you can guarantee that it is very far from the norm.

    Like it has been mentioned in this thread:- rule of thumb, PD must be current for AOS in and out :)

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  • sanju
    07-11 01:30 AM
    I emailed some of our core members. I hope they can take out some time to deal with these rouge elements tomorrow. In Hindi they say- Asteen Ka Saanp ( snake in your sleeve) for this kind of behavour from USINPAC

    I agree with you 100%. I think Anti-Immigrants like NumbersUSA and Tom Tancredo is better than USINPAC. For Anti-immigrants atleast we know where they stand and we know what to expect from them. usinpac is the worst kind of disease for the community where they can trick you anytime and you will not even know when they are stabbing you at your back. They just want to do photo-ops and claim the credit for the things they didn't even know. I live in VA and most people in Indian community in northern VA know about the inside story of these scamster. Initially a few lawmakers got the impression that usinpac represent the Indian American community, maybe that is what the con-artist at this org conveyed to a few lawmakers. Now everybody in DC area, including the lawmakers, know the truth about this group. A journalist friend in MD told me that even press and reporters know about this totally useless org called usinpac.

    It is one thing if they do something and then claim credit for doing it. The problem is first of all they claim to represent entire Indian American community; on top of that they do not do anything about the any issue including green card issue. But when they see something happening they will try to take ownership of anything moving and will try to make a show that things are moving because of them. Just as in this case, all the members of IV sent flowers and these guys are releasing press release to tell to the world that they are the once doing this drive. Such press release from them is extremely damaging as the basic intent of the ENTIRE flower campaign was o draw media attention. In this case usinpac did not spare all the people spending days and nights to coordinate, Nixtor and English_august and thousands of people who sent flowers. How can someone stoop so low? Now they want to get media attention and that is why they have sneaked in this press release. IV core must come clean on this and clearly renounce these consistent immature acts of these con-artists. This org with extremely bad reputation and we must stay as far away from them as possible.

    06-18 10:15 PM
    Thanks Guys.This was what me and my attorney were thinking.The reason why the officer asks my advanced degree is misleading inspite of the fact that my labor (as well as advt)was for bachelors +5 years experience and didnt mention anything about advanced degree.

    To answer your question ,yes i had about 7.5 years experience (about 6.5 at Indian Branch office and others else where) before joining current company in US.

    Attorney has mentioned we will argue my bachelors degree + 5 years experience is equivalent.

    BTB is it mandatory to have Masters in Labour? Wont bachelors+5 years experience be enough?

    03-26 02:55 PM
    ...and whats this poll going to do for us? I agree. Could we include location also in this poll. Salary & Location.