Saying 'No Thanks' to 87,500 High-Skill Workers

Saying 'No Thanks' to 87,500 High-Skill Workers

"The Obama administration announced on Tuesday that if holders of H-1B visas for high-skill foreign workers are being sponsored for a green card by their employers, then their spouses will be able to work in the U.S.

That's nice for those families, but the news didn't begin to address the real problem with the administration's H-1B visa policy: There aren't nearly enough visas. On April 1 the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services was deluged with 172,500 applications for H-1B visas that became available that day. But there were twice as many applications as spaces available because Congress allows only 85,000 of the three-year visas to be issued annually. Given that the application fee ranges between $1,575 and $2,500, if the average fee is $2,000, when the U.S. sends rejections to 87,500 H-1B applicants it will also be refunding about $175 million. In other words, the U.S. will be saying: Thanks for all that cash, and thanks for offering to bring your talents to this country, but no thanks.

In a country that supposedly values the free market, why are companies like Apple, Google, Intel and scores of others being denied the workers they need to compete in the global economy?" - Martin J. Lawler, Margaret D. Stock, Wall Street Journal, May 7, 2014.