The effect of immigration reform

FlagDemocrats and Republicans in Congress remain light years apart when it comes to many issues on Obama’s agenda in 2014, but the notion of immigration reform appears to have finally gotten the often bitter political rivals on some common ground at long last this week.

If the proposed laws go ahead, there could be a number of significant changes in store for business owners regarding the way they look for and hire new employees.  The outline of immigration reform principles just released by Republican leaders in the House of Representatives, for example, calls for legislation that would improve the immigration system in the United States by giving out US visas for workers based on the demands of employers instead of the family ties of applicants or a random lottery system.

The Republicans have pointed out the illogic of training immigrants at American colleges and universities, only to then force them to go back to their own countries in order to be able to find work.  “Visa and green card allocations need to reflect the needs of employers and the desire for these exceptional individuals to help to grow our economy.”

The issue hits very close to home for a number of entrepreneurs, especially those from the technology arena who complain that there are not enough STEM graduates in the United States and yet they are unable to get enough visas to hire many overseas workers.  “Real progress is in the cards for immigration reform this year,” says Tech America’s senior vice president, Mike Hettinger.