Retaining skilled engineers and regulating the Internet were two topics addressed by U.S. Sen. Kelly Ayotte, R-N.H., during a visit to the local office of tech giant Intel on Tuesday.
Ayotte first met with a select group of engineers and principals in a conference room to become familiar with Intel's work in New Hampshire, which is to develop software called compilers, according to site manager Sylvia Linares.
The group also informally discussed technology companies in general and their quest to attract and keep talented engineers, some who may be here on educational visas. After a brief tour, Ayotte addressed about 40 employees in a conference room, taking questions and stressing the importance of securing top engineering talent from around the globe.
Ayotte asked the group for their feedback on how the country could maintain its edge in developing fresh ideas for new products and technologies that can benefit the public on all fronts.
People offered suggestions on a handful of topics, including immigration reform and Internet regulation, such as legislating Internet distribution independently from content creation.
Afterward, Ayotte said of the immigration issue, "It's an area where the competition is really tremendous in terms of getting the best and the brightest here. So hearing directly from them on issues such as the type of legislation that we should be working on to deal with technology issues in Washington - issues involving the Internet, immigration reform - is incredibly valuable."
Ayotte said there were two issues in particular "that are bubbling up in the commerce committee I serve on: cybersecurity legislation that we need to address as well as legislation that periodically comes up about what do we do in terms of regulation of the Internet."
"It's also reaffirmed for me my support for immigration reform, to make sure we can keep the workforce we need here," she said.