Contractors Must Check For Immigrant Status
Looks like E-Verify is going to happen after all.
Starting Sept. 8, federal contractors will have to participate in a broad effort to crack down on illegal immigration by confirming that employees are allowed to work in the U.S.
Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano announced the Obama administration's support of the decade-old program on July 8.
That mandate, requiring contractors to use the system known as E-Verify, has been delayed repeatedly. Critics have complained that the system, which verifies that employees have legitimate Social Security numbers, often gets it wrong. Napolitano said the system has improved.
"Requiring those who seek federal contracts to use this system will create a more reliable and legal workforce. The rule complements our Department's continued efforts to strengthen immigration law enforcement and protect critical employment opportunities. As Senator Schumer and others have recognized, we need to continue to work to improve E-Verify, and we will.
"The federal contractor rule extends use of the E-Verify system to covered federal contractors and subcontractors, including those who receive American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funds. After a careful review, the Administration will push ahead with full implementation of the rule, which will apply to federal solicitations and contract awards Government-wide starting on September 8, 2009."
A story by Washington Technology's Alice Lipowicz included these thoughts:
"Implementing the mandatory E-Verify system has been postponed four times, first in January. White House officials said they needed more time to review a pending lawsuit brought by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce that challenged the constitutionality of mandatory E-Verify use by federal contractors, which had started as an executive order by President George W. Bush.
"Under Bush's executive order, about 168,000 federal contractors were to begin mandatory use of E-Verify starting this January. The order applies to federal contracts valued at more than $100,000 and subcontracts worth more than $3,000.
"The lawsuit challenging the rule is pending in the U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland. Co-plaintiffs with the chamber are the Society for Human Resource Management, the Associated Builders and Contractors, the HR Policy Association, and the American Council on International Personnel. Chamber officials were not immediately available for comment today."