In an effort to compliment the "American Specialty Agriculture Act" (H.R. 2847), Congressman Jason Chaffetz today plans to offer an amendment with Congressman Bob Goodlatte (VA-06) that would extend the length of time temporary workers in select agricultural industries could stay and work in America.
As currently written, H.R. 2847 allows temporary workers in agricultural industries to work in America for up to 10 months. However, the 10 month time frame does not match with the way some non-seasonal industries work. The Chaffetz/Goodlatte amendment would improve the bill by permitting legal, temporary workers in the dairy, goat, and sheep industries to work in America for up to three years (with an option to extend an additional three years) before being required to return to their home country and begin the re-application process.
Employers in the dairy, goat, and sheep industries would be required to hire temporary workers through the E-Verify program and the H-2C visa program -- ensuring that all workers were legal.
"This amendment improves the legislation," said Chaffetz. "The reality is that 10 months just isn't long enough for employers in non-seasonal industries to hire, train, and retain workers. You may only need workers to pick cherries seasonally, but you need workers to milk cows daily throughout the year."