On February 15, President Trump signed into law a funding bill for several federal agencies including the Department of Homeland Security.
The funding law includes the same H-2B discretionary language as last year, which gives DHS the authority, in consultation with DOL, to increase the H-2 cap for fiscal 2019 to 135,320 (66,000 + 69,320 (the number of H-2B returning worker visas or H-2Rs issued in FY 2007)). This is the same language that was in effect for fiscal 2017 and 2018.
While it is disappointing that Congress did not mandate a cap increase or other cap relief, in this political climate with all of the issues surrounding immigration policy, getting any H-2B cap relief signed into law is a significant achievement. Without the massive advocacy effort from all of you, we would not have had anything included in the bill regarding H-2B.
Our advocacy will now focus on getting DHS to immediately release all of the additional visas allowed under the new the law. To that end, please let us know if you would like your organization removed from or added to the attached letter urging DHS, in consultation with DOL, to approve all of the additional visas allowed for by law. Source: American Immigration Lawyers Association.