H-2B provisions included in approved omnibus spending bill Email
Colorado Green NOW
Monday, December 21, 2015 05:00 AM


H-2B visa programPresident Obama has signed into law an omnibus spending bill for fiscal year 2016 that includes important H-2B relief. According to the H-2B Workforce Coalition, this bill does the following: 

          • Exempts H-2B returning workers from the 66,000 annual cap;
          • Addresses H-2B wages and allows the use of private wage surveys, which were not allowed under the 2015 final H-2B wage rule;
          • Clearly defines “seasonal” as ten months, as opposed to the nine months in the current interim final H-2B comprehensive rule;
          • Prevents the US Department of Labor (DOL) from implementing the provisions of the interim final rule related to corresponding employment and the ¾ guarantee; 
          • Prevents DOL from implementing the new and burdensome DOL enforcement scheme in the interim final rule related to audit and the Certifying Officer (CO) assisted recruitment; and
          • Allows for the staggered crossing of seafood H-2B workers.

The H-2B provisions were an issue of great interest to many Colorado landscape companies, and a tremendous grassroots effort was employed to influence lawmakers to keep the provisions in the bill as it made its way through Congress.

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