During the last recession, the green industry got a bit of a reprieve in that the country’s attention was focused on the economic downturn. Now that things are improving, dialogue regarding various immigration policies is resurfacing, particularly among the enforcement only camp.
The federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) is currently conducting I-9 immigration audits at many greenhouse, nursery and landscape businesses across the country. Even if you are in compliance, the results can be devastating as you are forced to terminate experienced and valued workers. Poor compliance practices can mean thousands of dollars in fines – or worse. While the impacts of an audit cannot be completely avoided, smart preparation can save you time and money.
Compliance is only one facet of the immigration reform issue, though. Craig Regelbrugge, ANLA vice president for government relations, who co-chairs the Agriculture Coalition for Immigration Reform (ACIR), will give a brief update on the federal legislative picture and prospects for meaningful immigration reform in a May 24 webinar.