Feeds

H1-B visa bill sails through US Senate

Passed by 96 to one votes

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Bridging the IT gap between rising business demands and ageing tools

A bill to get 600,000 more work visas for high-tech foreigners sailed through the US Senate today.

The attempt to up the number of H1-B visas, outlined here last week, was passed by a vote of 96 to one in a bid to ease the sector's skills shortage. The visas will be dished out over a three-year period.

"There is overwhelming unanimity that we must act in this fashion if we are to keep our economy strong," said Senator Spencer Abraham, Reuters reported.

It is now up to the House of Representatives - without the increases the number of available visas will drop to 65,000 next year from 115,000 this year (this year's visas ran out in March).

"The short-term problem is how to fill the key positions immediately so that we don't lose opportunities to foreign competitors or so that we don't force American businesses to move offshore to where skilled workers might live," said Abraham.

But not all were happy with the outcome in Washington -Senator Harry Reid, who supported the visa bill, thought it lacked measures to benefit other immigrants. "I think the majority made a terrible mistake in that regard," he said.

Donations from high-tech companies have so far topped $12 million for Democratic candidates this year, and $10 million for Republicans. ®

Related Stories

Congress has H1-B epiphany
Readers' Letters H1B visas
US computer glitch issues raft of entry visas

Build a business case: developing custom apps

More from The Register

next story
BBC goes offline in MASSIVE COCKUP: Stephen Fry partly muzzled
Auntie tight-lipped as major outage rolls on
Nadella: Apps must run on ALL WINDOWS – PCs, slabs and mobes
Phone egg, meet desktop chicken - your mother
ITC: Seagate and LSI can infringe Realtek patents because Realtek isn't in the US
Land of the (get off scot) free, when it's a foreign owner
HP, Microsoft prove it again: Big Business doesn't create jobs
SMEs get lip service - what they need is dinner at the Club
Samsung threatens to cut ties with supplier over child labour allegations
Vows to uphold 'zero tolerance' policy on underage workers
Dude, you're getting a Dell – with BITCOIN: IT giant slurps cryptocash
1. Buy PC with Bitcoin. 2. Mine more coins. 3. Goto step 1
There's NOTHING on TV in Europe – American video DOMINATES
Even France's mega subsidies don't stop US content onslaught
You! Pirate! Stop pirating, or we shall admonish you politely. Repeatedly, if necessary
And we shall go about telling people you smell. No, not really
prev story

Whitepapers

Seven Steps to Software Security
Seven practical steps you can begin to take today to secure your applications and prevent the damages a successful cyber-attack can cause.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.