House Judiciary Committee POSTPONED the mark-up of Goodlatte’s Agricultural Guestworker Act, originally scheduled for today. The reason given is that the House Judiciary Committee needs additional time to work on it. They hope to bring it up again soon.
This article (Growing Produce, 17-09-27) is a good top-line (or 30,000 ft) overview of key points of Representative Goodlatte’s Ag Act. At the time of this article we were still waiting on the details— as you can see in the high-level overview, on the surface the key topics (except the cap) listed appear positive— BUT of course, as the old saying goes— the devil is in the details— and we finally have the details.
On Thursday evening, September 28, 2017 we received copies of the long awaited draft Ag Guest Worker bill from House Judiciary staff. Along with the bill draft was a general summary and a section by section summary.
As expected, Farm Worker Justice and others are circulating an opposition letter to Congress strongly opposing the forthcoming Goodlatte bill on farm worker issues AND the Newhouse rider that would allow for year-round work under H-2A. However, they are specifically attacking Goodlatte’s H-2C proposal. Their objections revolve around legal status for current workers (which we have always supported), wages, housing, and other issues.