Increase in H-2B Visa Application Cap Applauded By Rep. Poliquin
WASHINGTON – Today, Congressman Bruce Poliquin (ME-02) applauded the announcement by the U.S. Departments of Homeland Security (DHS) and Labor (DOL) to issue up to 15,000 additional temporary workers under the H-2B program, a big win for Maine’s economy, which is largely made up of local tourism businesses that need to fill temporary jobs for the massive upcoming August tourism season. The need is greater this year as Maine is experiencing the lowest level of unemployment since World War II.
Congressman Poliquin has been actively engaged on a short- and long-term solution for the H-2B Temporary Non-Agricultural Worker Program. The Congressman spoke directly over the phone to DOL Secretary Alex Acosta in June and has been in close contact with top officials at DHS on this issue.
Congressman Poliquin released the following statement:
“Maine’s small businesses and employees in our tourism industry work all year round, but without additional temporary seasonal workers, their entire small businesses could be in danger of failing to fulfill the seasonal demand,” said Congressman Poliquin. “Many Maine businesses have cut back on their hours, delayed opening and have had to turn away customers because they require additional staffing. Our lodging and restaurant industries depend on the summer months and require help from temporary workers to fuel our local economies.
“If we lose these local businesses, the permanent Maine jobs they create, and all of the jobs with other local businesses who support them, could be lost. I’m very pleased with today’s announcement of additional temporary visas, as this is a critical, big win for Maine’s economy.”
According to DHS, starting this week, eligible petitioners for H-2B visas can file Form I-129, Petition for a Nonimmigrant Worker and must submit a supplemental attestation on Form ETA 9142-B-CAA with their petition. Details on eligibility and filing requirements will be available in the final rule and on a new uscis.gov webpage to be published when the final rule is posted for public inspection.