Today, U.S. Senator Jerry Moran (R-Kan.), author of Startup Act 3.0, offered an amendment, #1256, to the Gang of Eight immigration bill to strengthen the United States' position to win the global battle for entrepreneurial talent.
"The immigration debate is an opportunity to create jobs for Americans by making certain highly-skilled and entrepreneurial immigrants are able to start new businesses and contribute to the growth of U.S. companies," Sen. Moran said. "If we miss this opportunity, we risk losing the next generation of great entrepreneurs and the jobs they will create. The status quo is not acceptable, and our legal immigration system is broken. I hope my colleagues will join me in supporting necessary changes to the legislation that will result in the creation of new jobs for Americans."
The immigration bill reported by the Judiciary Committee recognizes the importance of entrepreneurial immigrants by creating new visas for them and awarding points for the merit-based visa for successful entrepreneurship. Yet, Sen. Moran believes the bill could be improved to more accurately reflect how new businesses are formed, grow and hire workers. Highlights include:
Clarifying that jobs created by immigrant entrepreneurs are held by Americans
Reducing paperwork and reporting requirements so entrepreneurs can spend more time building and growing their businesses
Allowing entrepreneurs' family members to invest in their startup company
Adding flexibility to startup employee compensation to account for geographic and industry differences
With the right changes to the bill, an entrepreneur visa has the potential to create hundreds of thousands of needed jobs for Americans. If we fail to improve our immigration system -- one that currently tells these entrepreneurs and highly-skilled individuals "we don't want you" -- immigrant entrepreneurs will take their intellect and skills to another country and create jobs and economic opportunity there.
Sen. Moran's Amendment is strongly supported by startups, investors, business leaders and immigration attorneys across the country including:
106 Miles, 1776 DC, Amicus, Blue Label Labs, Bluefields, CONNECT, Convo, E2 Visa Reform, Engine Advocacy, Foundry Group, Gazelle Labs, Geocko, Hackers & Founders, Indexor, LawGives, Lean Startup Circle, MasterPlans, Modulated Imagining, National Small Business Association, PolitiHacks, Prowant Law, Revolv, RocketSpace, Silicon Valley Leadership Group, SoftTech VC, StartupCity Des Moines, StartupDigest, TAO Pivot, TechStars, Virginia Tech Entrepreneur Club, Vysion Communications, and Watson Immigration Law.