Amended HR 1044 Bill with S386 - Nurses - H1B - LCA - Info Added Article

What is Senate Amended HR 1044 Bill? S386 + Section A + H1B, LCA?

In Green Card by KumarUpdated : 14 Comments

Let’s quickly look at the background of both HR 1044 and S.386 Bills and their history before we jump into the amendment for your context.

History of HR 1044 Bill History, S 386 Bills :

Back in early July 2019, HR 1044 Bill to Remove Per Country Limits was passed in House and was introduced in Senate and assigned to Senate Judiciary Committee.  Also, around the same time in Senate, we had a similar Bill S. 386, which was more or less like HR 1044 Bill, that was amended as per Senator Grassley’s request adding clauses of H1B, LCA related topics.  Though the S. 386 Bill was brought onto the Senate floor in July, it was blocked by Senator Rand Paul. The reason for blocking or hold was that Senator Paul wanted to introduce carve out (set aside some amount) for nurses ( Section A workers). All of the above happened in early to mid-July 2019.

Background of New Amendment to Remove Hold:

Since July, until early September, there seem to have some negotiations done with Senator Paul on the hold reason and ultimately compromised to include his requests in the Bill as well. The ideas was to get his consent and have the hold removed. On September 17th, 2019, the new clause related to Nurses carve out ( Section A workers) was added to the official Bill text as Amendment 939. The important thing to note is that, all these amendments are done to HR 1044 Bill and NOT S.386 Bill.  Now, the current HR 1044 Bill amendments include removing of old text of HR 1044, adding of original S.386 Bill Text + Sen. Paul’s Nurses Provision + Sen. Grassley’s H1B and LCA Provisions.

Let’s look at the HR 1044 Amendment 939 summary with some actual screenshots on the details and key points in amendment. In short, the below amendments are added to original HR 1044 bill text and is agreed by Sen. Paul and Sen. Grassley…

Details of Amendments to HR 1044 : S 386 + Nurses Carve out + H1B, LCA Provisions

There are three primary changes in the proposed amendment. Let’s look at each of them separately for ease of understanding.

S. 386 Bill Text Added to HR 1044

The first change you see in amendment was to replace the entire Bill text in HR 1044 with S. 386 text. Though the meaning is same, just the wording is slightly different. If you look at the below screenshot, it clearly indicates to strike out all the text after the enacting clause and replace it with following. If you look closely at Original S. 386 Bill PDF, you will see that the exact text is repeated in the Amendment 939 – PDF.  

Adding of S 386 Bill Text to HR 1044

Nurses Carve Out (Schedule A Workers) Provision – 5,000 Immigrant Visas

The second change you see in the amendment is the addition of the clause related to the Schedule A workers. The text says that every year at least 5,000 immigrant visas should be made available for Schedule A workers as they are described in Section 656.5(a) until 2028. If you look at that Section 656.5(a), they are primarily anyone with Foreign nursing certifications, professional nurse, or physical therapist. See below screenshot on who all fall under Section 656.5(a).

Schedule A Nurses Clause HR 1044 - 656.5

The nurses carve out clause says that, from FY 2020 to 2028, every year at least 5,000 immigrant visas should be given for Section A workers until 2028.  Also, for FY 2020, 2021, and 2022, the visas that are allocate as per the original HR 1044 clause should be given as normal and those should not be counted in this 5,000 that is set aside every year. See below actual screenshot and text.

Rand Paul HR 1044 Amendment Details SA 939

H1B Program and LCA  Provisions from S.386 Bill Amendments

Senator Chuck Grassley Chuck Grassley included many H1B program and Labor condition application(LCA) related provisions as amendment to the original S. 386 Bill.  Nothing has changed in this part. All of the same details in that amendment are added here as well to HR 1044. Below are the provisions for your recap.  If you are not familiar with LCA, first read What is Labor Condition Application (LCA), Why file it?

  • Post H1B Jobs on Department of Labor :  Department of Labor(DOL) should setup a “Searchable Internet website” to post the H1B positions that are available to be viewed by public for free. The job has to be posted for at least 30 days  on the website
  • H1B Employer Application Requirements for New Applications :  Various rules that need to be complied by the employer when they do recruiting for open positions.
    • Not advertise the position saying that it is available only to H1B holders
    • Need to submit the IRS W-2 forms related to H1B workers to the DOL Secretary.
    • The LCA should have prevailing wage determining methodology info.
  • New LCA Fee : Currently, there is no fee for filing LCAs. In the new proposed rules, for administrative expenses, DOL has to come up with a fee for LCA filing.
  • Elimination of B1  visa in lieu ( instead) of H1B :  US State department should not issue B1 visa for short term work contracts, instead of H1B visa. This is something that many companies use and abuse as well for short term projects, the trick is in the enforcement.  
  • Additional Clauses for H1B Employers Investigation and enforcement, LCA Reviews
    • Protections for employees to report violations related to wages or LCA provisions
    • Information sharing between USCIS and DOL on the H1B petitions for compliance.
    • Authority for Dept of Labor (DOL) for any fraud or false information by employers.
    • Prevailing wage enforcements for proper wage payments by employers in an area.
    • DOL may conduct surveys and annual audits for LCA compliance.
    • Annual reports on audit and compliance for public review.
    • more penalties amount paid by employers for violations for LCA violations.
    • Expansion of DOL’s authority to conduct investigations based on anonymous complaints, etc.
H1B and LCA Changes in HR 1044 Amendment

You can check all these details of H1B and LCA provisions in details in S. 386 Bill Summary with more description on the above

That’s about it folks. You can check the Congressional record for Official Text of the SA 939 Amendment  that has all the above changes. 

Current Status of Amended HR 1044 Bill :

  • Oct 1st, 2019 : Nothing new from the progress of the bill HR 1044/S.386 standpoint, but there was an update shared by Immigration voice on the situation with Senator Durbin, some history and his stance. You can read it on Facebook Post . The post indicates that the future of the bill is uncertain as Sen. Durbin would object/ block it unless, there is increase in Green Card numbers…
  • Sep 26th, 2019 : Couple of key updates today on S386/HR1044.
    • The HR 1044 was not brought onto the floor as expected previously. It was updated by Immigration Voice that the voting would not happen. Check their Tweet .
    • Everyone wondered the reason, later the videos related to Senator Dick Durbin indicate the discussion on the HR 1044 bill and where Dick Durbin mentioned that he spoke to Senator Lee on this topic and he would want to do a fix that will benefit everyone and not hurt others. His goal is to raise the overall number of green cards under the EB category, rather than the current bill that favours Indians and hurts rest of the world. Senator Lee knew that he would get objection from Sen. Durbin, hence he did not bring it on the floor…That’s the reason for not having vote today. See below videos captured by users circulated on WhatsApp from the meeting with public. Listen to last 40 seconds, where he talks about what was offered to Sen. Lee.
  • Sep 25th, 2019 : Senator Lee updated on his live Facebook Stream that he got agreement from Sen. Perdue on the language and he will bring the HR 1044 ( which is S.386 +H1B Amendments, LCA + Nurses Provision) again tomorrow Sep 26th for Unanimous consent. But, he expressed his concern that Sen. Dick Durbin might object. We need to wait and see. Check out Facebook Live Video from min 29 to 33.
  • September 19th : HR 1044 bill was brought on to the Senate Floor for Unanimous Consent by Senator Lee on September 19th, 2019. It was objected by Republican Senator David Perdue from Georgia. The reason for objection :
    • Bill Language Needs to be clarified ( does not tell the details)
    • Concern on the impact it would have on specific industries in his state.
    • He did say that he will work on this and wants to pass the Bill by changing the modifications.
    • Sen. Lee said he would work through the weekend and come back next week for the Unanimous Consent again.

The amended HR 1044 Bill needs to follow all the steps as described in How a Bill becomes Law in US , which is still a long process ahead. The amended Bill has to be first passed in Senate, then the same again has to go to House and get passed and then President…

Is amended bill much different from HR 1044 passed in House ?

The fundamental theme of the bill remains same. But the text of Senate Bill S.386 was added, along with amendments H1B, LCA and Nurses quota.

What is the main bill now – S. 386 or this amended HR 1044 ?

Going forward, amended HR 1044 would be the main bill as amendments are done to the old HR 1044 bill. The S 386 bill does not have all the amendments.

What are your thoughts on the Amended HR 1044 Bill ?

   

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Comments ( 14 )

  1. XYZ

    60% population in the USA is from family Immigration and first majority is Hispanics, Second India and than China.

    H1bs from Bangladesh/Srilanka/Nepal/Pak are all same pretty much same like India. How are they diversed? That they get GC in six months. Three countries were originally connected with India later they became independent from India.

    Diversity visa has education criteria only High School Diploma. What will they do here? Will take away normal worker jobs which are already less because it’s outsourced to China etc..

    DACA’s parents were illegals. So many illegals and visitor’s kids are US citizens because they are born here and it was pre-planned.

    TN visa allows one to stay here and work again no one realises that they are also average and migrants.

    Nowhere in the world such Immigration exists.

    Suggestion to India born students and H1b stay where you are. You will be more happy.

  2. XYZ

    Do not waste your valuable years Indians 15 years in GC and than 5 yrs for citizenship. Not worth at all. Get a decent job somewhere else and stay happy with your family members. Don’t come here and get into this never ending stamping and Immigration lawyer entertainment business. You are just a worker for IT co. And USA. Even if you want to explore do that but don’t file GC if option available. If your company don’t file GC just be happy and leave from here. GC is a never ending trap if born in India.

    USA has
    Infrastructure/water/electricity/national parks but not any consideration if you are born in India. You will do everything correct and qualified as per their law but will be seen as fraud person only.

    Stay with your family/parents in India. Years won’t come back.

  3. Zhifeng Xu

    The reality of S386 is: through decades of abusing, now Indians have already taken up 75% of the total H1B visa. The green card cap for all the other countries is 7% while Indians have 20%. Now they want to pass s386 to occupy every single green card! And Chinese will not get any of the Green cards in the coming 10 years either! As a result, S386 should not be passed before the following two steps are fulfilled:
    Step 1. Since a large part of these H1B visas are problematic and should checked, the illegal applicants should be revoked their H1B visas even green cards; Step 2. Since Indians have a cap of 20% while others only have 7%, we count how many more green cards are issued to Indians than people from other countries, and Indians should have zero green card until such a discrepancy is covered. The core is not about nationality, it is about CHEATING. In the name of fairness and justice, we should clear up those cheaters first. For example, nearly 75 out of 100 have passed an exam and get offered a job through cheating. One day clear evidence shows there exist cheating! Rather that given those 75 cheater a job immediately, we should check how many of them are cheaters and revoke their job offers, and give the offer to those legally passed the exam their jobs! Or else, by giving those 75 cheaters a job means unfair for those who may have the job but got their job stolen by those cheaters! Or we can choose a better such as increase the cap gradually, like 14% for the next year, then 28%, then 56% , then 100%. What’s more is that S386 will clearly hand over more jobs from US citizen to Indians and decrease total number of jobs for US citizens. The present S386 is absolutely the worst solution. The video below can help you learn the situation better:

    1. Vik

      With all due respect, your comments and analysis are wrong and does not align with the laws and freedoms the US provides and stands for. The point of the S386/ HR1044 bill is to eliminate the discrimination within employment based Green card applications. Your Skill and your country of birth have no dependence on one another. This bill will not fix the overall immigration system but will help improve how things currently are and make it fair for all immigrants going forward. A lot of hard working immigrants from India and China have been waiting a long time already to get the green cards they deserve, so its not unreasonable if everyone now will have to wait as we are all immigrants hoping to start a life in the US. So please do not discriminate and get the right facts.

  4. Amit

    Can someone tell in a laymans language, if i applied for green card in 2011, then what are my chances as per this new rule? Will I get or wait another 100 years?

  5. Ron

    This is a good bill and a reasonable solution to unfair and broken immigration system. I believe a lot of people complaining and that are against the bill are those already have less waiting time from years. This bill will probably pass senate next week and will provide relief to thousands of people from different countries mainly China and India. Thanks to senator David Perdue for adding Nurses section to it.

    1. chaandhu

      I support this bill if H1B system has not been abused.

      This bill is going to make America worse both economically and diversity wise.
      People who work in IT field know how H1B has been abused by the companies, managers. People who support s386 also please support streamlining H1B system. Students literally abused the OPT with fake resume, fake SSN, fake GC alien numbers. Don’t dream that by getting GC, we can do anything we want. My enemy is my fellow Indian. I have to compete with my Indian friend by decreasing the hourly rates.

      Already region-based,caste-based politics is dominating Dallas.. with this bill approved, these dirty politics is going to reach its max limits. This bill is going to inherit Indian corruption, bribery in an American way.
      I pity fellow Americans, Indians who support this bill and doesn’t understand the future.

      Welcome to mess.. 🙂

  6. EMigrant

    I think it is a mistake to believe anything can get done in this political environment in USA. Don’t waste your most productive life years on this shithole country. There are much better alternatives including India and China that are more fulfilling and you dont have abandon your famly while your gc is being processed. I can bet a million this is not going to pass .. and later trump himself will veto it if it gets to him.

  7. Aris

    Ravi,
    How does “If you want diversity, go for family visa and have 850K” make sense?
    If you go for family visa, isn’t that totally against the idea of “diversity”?

    I am a tech talent and I have more than 850K, and I say “NO” to this bill.

  8. Surendra

    The bill is ridiculous. This will block millions and millions of people from other countries getting their green card in a timely fashion. Also, the bill goes against the diversity goals and policy USA have. Period.

    1. Ravi

      Surendra,
      If you want diversity, go for family visa and have 850K.
      Which country you came from? You came on a shady illegal route, you fear about the tech talents?

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