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Mayors and CEOs push for immigration reform

New Yorkers may have heard of the group of CEOs and mayors called the Partnership for a New American Economy, which is pushing hard for immigration reform. Mayor Bloomberg is in that group, and it also includes the CEOs of Microsoft, News Corp., Boeing, Walt Disney and Marriott International.

The nine co-chairs of the partnership want to make it easier for foreign-born people to create businesses in the United States, where there is a shortage of professionals with degrees in the STEM subjects -- technology engineering, science and math.

In the engineering field, the fact is that 50 percent of the doctorates and more than 40 percent of the master's degrees earned in the U.S. belong to people who were born in another country. So why is it so difficult for these highly valuable and skilled professionals to get a green card? And how can the U.S. continue to compete with other countries that have become more welcoming to foreign talent?

These issues are exactly what the Partnership for a New American Economy seeks to address. The group wants immigration reform that makes it quicker and simpler for H-1B workers and other skilled professionals to get their green cards and live permanently in the U.S.

As one representative from the partnership points out, a comprehensive reform bill would have to include language that addresses the young, would-be beneficiaries of the Dream Act, as well as business immigrants who already have math and science skills. That kind of legislation takes compromise from Democrats and Republicans.

Regardless of whether meaningful reform happens in the near future, immigrants seeking a change of status will need help navigating the legal process. If you have questions about immigration issues, feel free to stop by our Staten Island immigration site. Our firm helps individuals in matters of employment-based immigration law.

Source: The Seattle Times, "Local entrepreneurs make the economic case for immigration reform," Bruce Ramsey, Sept. 11, 2012

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