E-Verify Advances; U.S. Agribusiness On Trade Mission To S.E. Asia
The House Judiciary Committee has advanced mandatory E-Verify legislation by a vote of 20 to 13. This legislation would force employers to use E-Verify to ensure workers can legally work in the U.S. Democrats argued this legislation would devastate ag employers - but Judiciary Committee Chair Robert Goodlatte says the committee will consider a separate agricultural guest worker bill as soon as possible. Agribusiness groups object to this legislation unless an expanded guest worker program is established.
Leaders from six state agriculture departments and 21 U.S. agribusinesses and organizations will accompany USDA Under Secretary Michael Scuse on a trade mission to Southeast Asia from March 9 to March 13 to expand export opportunities for U.S. food and agricultural products in one of the world's fastest-growing markets. Scuse noted that the majority of participating companies are small- or medium-sized enterprises and many are owned by women, minorities and veterans. The next USDA trade mission will take place June 1 to June 5, 2015, to Panama and the Dominican Republic.