Tuesday, May 23, 2006

ITAA Calls on Senate to Reject Immigration Amendment

In usual form, the ITAA has worked against reforms to the H-1b cap that would limit displacement of American workers. Senators Grassley and Feinstein introduced an amendment that would presumably offer protections for American software professionals. At this time, I don't have the text of the amendment however both Senators have a history of supporting technology professionals. The fact that the ITAA opposes the amendment means that it is probably a good amendment.

If you were to think of all the nice things one could do to help software professionals, reverse that. You now have the ITAA position on just about everything. The former president, Harris Miller, is now running for the US Senate in Virginia. Fortunately for us Jim Webb is going to win the primaries and ITAA alum Miller is being called for what he is: "The Anti-Christ of Offshoring".


The Information Technology Association of America (ITAA) today called on the Senate to reject the Feinstein-Grassley amendment to S. 2611, the Comprehensive Immigration Reform Act of 2006. The amendment would impose a hard cap on the number of visas issued in the H-1B visa program, thus eliminating a provision allowing market-based adjustments to the total. "The amendment would eliminate key provisions of the bill that are designed to strengthen U.S. competitiveness," said ITAA Senior Vice President Jeff Lande. "The market-based adjustment provision sets a mark and allows the system to adjust itself, based on market need. That is a vast improvement over the current system, which exhausts the available number before the end of the fiscal year and leaves companies in the lurch."

Lande said the talents and skills of H-1B visa holders are critical to U.S. competitiveness. "Other countries in the developed world are removing barriers to talent in order to enable a more globally competitive workforce. The Feinstein-Grassley amendment substitutes bureaucratic process for what is in the long-term best interests of the American economy and American people. We call on the Senate to reject this amendment."


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