Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Big change for NC's E-verify bill

From a series of bill blurbs I'm working on for The Indy:

House Bill 36: This bill used to crack down on illegal immigration by requiring government agencies and their contractors to use e-verify, a federal program that tracks the citizenship of would be workers.

But a new version of the bill, introduced Wednesday morning, would expand that requirement to every large business in the state, whether it works with the government or not.

Businesses with fewer than 25 employees would be exempt — unless they get a government contract. There's also an exemption for businesses that employ seasonal workers for 90 days or less, which would give farms an out. Beyond that, employers would have to use the system to make sure they don't hire illegal immigrants.

The new bill got a hearing Wednesday morning, but not a vote at the request of the speaker's office, sponsoring state Rep. Harry Warren. Warren said he expects plenty of amendment suggestions between now and Friday, when he predicts a committee vote.

"Everything seems fluid," he said.

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