March 16, 2012

Crapo and Risch Sign Letter Asking for H-2A Fix

Washington, DC - Idaho Senators Mike Crapo and Jim Risch signed onto a bipartisan letter to the U.S. Department of Labor, requesting improvements to the H-2A visa program that allows for admission of guest workers for temporary or seasonal jobs.

"We have heard from many in the Idaho agricultural community saying they are having great difficulty with the temporary visa application process.  The lack of temporary workers severely impacts their ability to get their products to the market," said Senators Crapo and Risch.  "With three different federal agencies involved in the application process, we need to get everyone to come together and make this program work." 

The letter highlights concerns over lack of uniformity among the different agencies and unreasonable denials and scrutiny.  Appeals of denied H-2A applications have increased by 800 percent since 2008.

The letter to Labor Secretary Solis also requests the different agencies host joint regional meetings with producers on the program.

Along with Crapo and Risch, senators signing the letter included Michael Bennet (D-CO), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Bill Nelson (D-FL) and Mike Enzi (R-WY).

Follow the link to read a copy of the letter: https://www.crapo.senate.gov/issues/ag/documents/2012_3_14_joint_ltr_h-2a.pdf.