WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.) today re-introduced legislation to help businesses comply with immigration laws by certifying the legal status of their workforce. The Accountability Through Electronic Verification Act would permanently authorize the E-Verify program, an internet–based system that assists employers in determining whether current or prospective employees are authorized to work in the United States. The bill requires employers to use the program to determine workers’ eligibility.
Led by Senator Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), the bill’s is co-sponsored by Senators Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.), John Boozman (R-Ark.), Tom Cotton (R-Ark.), Mike Enzi (R-Wyo.), Joni Ernst (R-Iowa), Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-Miss.), Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.), James Lankford (R-Okla.), Mike Lee (R-Utah), David Perdue (R-Ga.), and Roger Wicker (R-Miss.). Representative Mo Brooks (R-Ala.) is introducing companion legislation in the House of Representatives.
“E-Verify has proven to be an effective tool both for employers and workers, helping businesses comply with our immigration laws and helping individuals secure good-paying jobs. I’m proud to again join with my colleagues in an effort to improve the hiring process across the country through this legislation,” Senator Capito said.
“Businesses across the country have opted to use the E-Verify system to help them comply with our immigration laws. E-Verify is a proven tool for employers, including myself, that helps reduce incentives for illegal immigration and safeguards job opportunities for Americans and other legal workers. Expanding the system to every workplace will improve accountability for all businesses and take an important step toward putting American workers first,” Senator Grassley said.
“Illegal aliens are enticed to come to America in large part by job opportunities. Eliminating illegal aliens’ ability to take jobs and suppress the wages of Americans and lawful immigrants by making E-Verify mandatory nationwide with stiff consequences for violators will drastically reduce illegal immigration and result in self-deportation of illegal aliens already here. I look forward to working with Senator Grassley to advance this crucial America first legislation,” Representative Brooks said.
Currently, employers voluntarily submit information from an employee’s Form I-9 to the Department of Homeland Security through the E-Verify system, which works in partnership with the Social Security Administration to determine worker eligibility. There is no cost for employers to use E-Verify. More than 750,000 businesses use the program today.
E-Verify was established in 1996 as a pilot program with employers in five states allowed to participate. The pilot program was reauthorized in 2001, expanded to employers in every state in 2003 under Grassley-authored legislation and reauthorized several times since 2008.
The Accountability Through Electronic Verification Act does the following:
Bill text is available HERE.
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