Illegal Bill Illegal?

A bill filed in the State House threatens to criminalize the normal and legal activities of hundreds of small business owners. House Bill 308 “State Contracts/ Illegal Immigrants” filed by Rep. George Cleveland would mandate participation in a voluntary federal program by everyone who enters into a contract with the State of North Carolina for “construction or repair work or for the purchase of apparatus, supplies, materials, or equipment”.

The Bill would increase the cost of running State Government by burdening businesses entering into State contracts with more red tape and legal liability. It would lead to employment discrimination against legal aliens and promote outsourcing to foreign companies not subject to United States immigration laws. Many small businesses will either shun State Contracts or increase bids to cover costs.

Currently all employers are required to file Employment Eligibility Form I-9 for all employees, citizens and noncitizens, hired after November 6, 1986. House Bill 308 requires participation in the voluntary Basic Pilot Employment Verification Program, a joint project of the Department of Homeland Security, United States Citizenship and Immigration Services and the Social Security Administration.

The Basic Pilot Employment Verification Program is an online voluntary pilot program in which the employment eligibility of all newly hired employees are confirmed after the Employment Eligibility Verification Form (Form I-9) has been completed. After verification by the Social Security Administration of valid Social Security numbers for all employees and certain work authorizations for some employees, the Department of Homeland Security provides employers with access to selected data from the DHS database to conduct automated verification checks on newly hired alien employees.

The verification is only valid after the hiring of an individual and only for new hires after the date of signing of a Memorandum of Agreement (MOU) between the Employer, the SSA and the DHS. However the Bill requires verification for each individual employed by the contractor to perform the work under the contract. This is not legally possible for employees hired before the signing of the MOU yet the Bill requires certification that the employer has verified the legal status of each individual employed by the contractor to perform the work under the contract.

Any legal alien hired before the date of the MOU could not work on a State contract covered by the Bill as an employer could be charged with a Felony. An employer who complies fully with Basic Pilot Employment Verification Program could be found guilty of a Class I Felony if they certify to the State that they have verified the legal status of each individual performing the work.

Provisions of the Bill will be particularly onerous in times of disaster when contracts for “construction or repair work or for the purchase of apparatus, supplies, materials, or equipment” are necessary for emergency response and, verification is impossible due to either limited time frame or lack of basic communications access or equipment necessary for online verification.

Cross posted at Progressive Pulse

Comments

Greg, read this twice and still don't get it

Are you saying that a law that makes companies verify that a potential employee is legal or illegal is bad for business? Are you also claiming that this will send jobs out of country? Sorry, but I disagree with you on this one. I thought I read where Congress is looking into changing the laws for American Companies that are going over seas, taking away their tax credit. Seems this law could have something about making this less burdensome on the employer and without the tax credit, I don't think they will be so eager to leave America.

Am I wrong? Please explain.

No matter that patriotism is too often the refuge of scoundrels. Dissent, rebellion, and all-around hell-raising remain the true duty of patriots.

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I think that you are reading too much into the post

The main assertion is that it is not possible for the companies to follow the law in some instances (e.g. where they have already hired an employee) since the program that they are directed to does not cover those employees. How can you write a law that will be impossible to follow and make it a felony not to follow it if you want to interact with the state.

I do that a lot....Thanks for setting me straight

How's Targator babe doing these days? Wish she had joined us in Seagrove....

No matter that patriotism is too often the refuge of scoundrels. Dissent, rebellion, and all-around hell-raising remain the true duty of patriots.

Progressive Discussions My Blog

Catch 22

Sorry if the post is obtuse and thanks to Targator for synthesizing it. Because few people have to deal with immigration issues it is often hard to explain. My contention is that this law and laws like it, put sand in the wheels of State government business in an ineffective attempt to mitigate a Federal problem.

As things stand, it is very hard for the State to obtain competitive bids on many contracts, including construction contracts of all sizes and also smaller contracts that would be attractive to small and minority businesses were it not for a multitude of bidding requirements.

The website of the Division of Purchase and Contract of the Department of Administration presents a virtual wall of bureaucracy built in response to multiple legislative mandates. At the same time that Bills are being introduced to reduce the cost of State construction this bill presents additional restrictions which would drive up cost while doing little if anything to enforce immigration laws.

A business operating legally and in full compliance with Federal immigration law could be prohibited from doing business with the State because they do not comply with a State law that Federal law prohibits then from complying with. Catch 22.

A fine example of over

A fine example of over regulaion! Pencil pushers have nothing to do but sit around and think up these things. And of course there is no one to see that the law iscfollowed so it is basically ignored except for filling out the paper work with the correct words and numbers.Stupidity in the extreme!

YOUR COMMENTS ARE WELCOME. THANK YOU FOR VISITING. BRENDA BOWERS

Hey Brenda, Thanks for visiting the other threads here

and joining the other conversations. I can say that I don't always agree with you, but your take is certainly interesting.

No matter that patriotism is too often the refuge of scoundrels. Dissent, rebellion, and all-around hell-raising remain the true duty of patriots.

Progressive Discussions My Blog

Seems obvious

That this was prepared with the best of intentions and absolutely no clue. To which committee has this been referred?

"Be the change you wish to see in the world." - Gandhi

Committee(s)

It had a 1st reading today and went to Judiciary II. There is another Bill H-55 submitted by Clary, Moore, McComas and Neumann, that has similar but even more onerous provisions. It also had a 1st reading and went to Rules, Calendar, and Operations earlier this month. I hope to write about it tomorrow.

Please keep us posted

and let us know if public comment/email/etc will be helpful.

"Be the change you wish to see in the world." - Gandhi

ha

Judiciary II. Where fascist tendencies go to die.

Draft Brad Miller -- NC Sen ActBlue :::Petition

"Keep the Faith"