The immigration reform bill is going to be shortly announced by the Senate. The announcement was supposed to have been made on Tuesday, but was deferred as a mark of respect to the victims of the bombing at the Boston Marathon.
The Gang of Eight, the name given to the group of Senators, has been working on this bill. The Bill is likely to offer more border security and legalizing the status of the country’s more than 11 million undocumented immigrants.
The bill paves a way to US citizenship for those who had entered the country prior to December 31, 2011 and meet other requirements like having been physically present in the country, having a clean record, pay taxes due along with $500. This would get them a temporary status and they are likely to be termed “Registered Provisional Immigrants”. After six years they can pay $500 to renew their status.
But before all this, the Border Security Force has to be able to maintain stricter policing at the borders to ensure that all borders are under surveillance and that 90% of persons trying to cross the borders without documentation are being stopped. This will be based on a “Comprehensive Southern Border Security Strategy.” If the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the BSF are not able to do this, there will be another Southern Border Security Commission to take care of the issue.
Employers are to have the E-verify in place and screen all the persons they employ. An electronic exit system has to be maintained at all air and sea-ports to collect visa and passport information.
The BSF is to be provided with funds and additional personnel. On successfully meeting all the specifications put forth by the Comprehensive Southern Border Security Strategy, or the Southern Border Security Commission, if it comes into being, and on submission of a Notice of Commencement by the Secretary of DHS to the Congress, undocumented immigrants can apply for an adjustment of status to Registered Provisional Immigrant.
Registered Provisional Immigrants can begin to apply for an adjustment of status to permanent residency only after the following measures have been achieved per the “Outline of the Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act of 2013”:
- The Comprehensive Southern Border Security Strategy has been submitted to Congress and is substantially deployed and substantially operational;
- The Southern Border Fencing Strategy has been submitted to Congress, implemented and is substantially completed;
- the Secretary has implemented a mandatory employment verification system to be used by all employers to prevent unauthorized workers from obtaining employment in the United States; and
- The Secretary is using an electronic exit system at air and sea ports of entry that operates by collecting machine-readable visa or passport information from air and vessel carriers.
The only exception to this would be those persons eligible for the Agricultural legislation and the DREAM Act.