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America’s small businesses need a solution: U.S. Representative Charles W. Boustany, Jr.

April 2, 2008


U.S. Representative Charles W. Boustany, Jr., MD, R-Southwest Louisiana, began a discharge petition to bring Rep. Bart Stupak’s Save Our Small and Seasonal Businesses Act to the House floor for a vote.


In the words of Boustany, “The original Stupak Small Businesses Act is critical to preventing local economies around the country from stalling,” he also added, “Businesses with seasonal demand need access to temporary, seasonal workers such as crawfish peelers. America’s small businesses need a solution, and this bill is the best option to resolve this looming economic disaster. After voting to stimulate the economy, it's inconceivable that we wouldn't pass a bill that costs nothing but will give many small businesses a needed shot in the arm. To do anything less would be irresponsible. I will work with members on both sides of the aisle to pass this broadly supported H-2B fix.”

Boustany introduced H. Res. 1025 providing for immediate consideration of Congressman Bart Stupak’s (D-MI) Save Our Small Businesses Act, which increases the number of potential H-2B workers by reauthorizing the returning worker program. Businesses across the country depend on temporary workers to meet their seasonal demand.


H-2B visas are temporary visas for non-agricultural jobs. For the past three years, Congress has allowed H-2B workers who worked legally in the US during one of the previous three years to return to the US under an H-2B visa and not count against the cap. The arbitrary cap is 66,000 workers, but last year approximately 120,000 workers came in to the US for a temporary time through this returning worker program.


This year, the Hispanic Caucus decided to block this returning worker program in hopes of using H-2B employers to pressure members of Congress. The Boustany discharge petition requires a majority of Congressional signatures to bring the Stupak measure to the House floor.



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