This bill — known as the Protect and Grow American Jobs Act — would reform the H-1B visa program for high-skilled non-immigrants. It would revise the definition of “exempt H-1B nonimmigrant” to eliminate the masters or higher degree exemption, and to raise the annual salary threshold from $60,000 to $100,000. Under current law, exempt H-1B nonimmigrants can be hired by “H-1B dependent employers” (whose workforce is at least 15 percent H-1B workers) without having to satisfy H-1B hiring criteria that require employers to recruit American workers first and not layoff existing U.S employees to replace them with H-1B workers.
- Not enactedThe President has not signed this bill
- The senate has not voted
- The house has not voted
Committee on the JudiciaryImmigration and CitizenshipIntroducedJanuary 3rd, 2017
- house Committees
What is House Bill H.R. 170?
Cost of House Bill H.R. 170
In-Depth: Sponsoring Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA) introduced this bill to reform the H-1B visa program to protect American workers:
“In order for America to lead again, we need to ensure we can retain the world’s best and brightest talent. At the same time, we also need to make sure programs are not abused to allow companies to outsource and hire cheap foreign labor from abroad to replace American workers. The legislation we’re introducing today does both. It will ensure that our valuable high-skilled immigration spots are used by companies when the positions cannot be filled by the existing workforce. This bill is simple, bipartisan and is an important step to growing our economy and fixing one of the many aspects of our country’s broken immigration system.”
Lead cosponsor Rep. Scott Peters (D-CA) added:
“Curbing abuse of the H-1B system will protect American jobs and help ensure that visas are available for innovators who need them to maintain a competitive workforce. This bipartisan bill makes one of the much-needed updates to our high-skilled visa system to level the playing field and help prevent companies from taking advantage of the system to offshore jobs. I will continue pushing for a comprehensive fix to our immigration system, but in the meantime this is a smart step forward.”
Summary by Eric Revell(Photo Credit: Theadesign / iStock)