Section by Section Summary of the
Changes to S.744 in the Hoeven-Corker-Leahy
By Greg Siskind
Siskind Susser, PC – Immigration Lawyers
Title I Changes
Section 3. Effective Date Triggers.
Adjustments for RPIs to permanent residency may not start until 6 months after the date when DHS, in
consultation with the DOJ, DOD, the DHS Inspector General and the Comptroller General of the US,
submits a report to the President and Congress certifying that
The Comprehensive Southern Border Security Strategy has been submitted to Congress including the
minimum requirements listed in Section 5 of the bill. The CSBS must be deployed and operational.
The fencing strategy must be completed (previous version said “substantially completed”). The fence
must be 700 miles with double fencing where deemed appropriate.
Mandatory E-Verify must be implemented.
The exit tracking system must be in use at all international airports with CBP officers.
At least 38,405 border patrol agents must be deployed on the southern border.
Section 4. Southern Border Security Commission.
The SBSC must be created within a year of enactment. Previous version called on DHS to create the SBSC
within five years if they did not obtain operational control in all border sectors.
If DHS cannot certify effective control in all border sectors for at least one fiscal year before the fifth
anniversary of the enactment of the bill, it must submit a report and within 60 days of that can begin
spending funds provided in Section 6(a)(3)(A)(iii).
The four Border States and Nevada will be represented on the SBSC.
Landowners will now be represented on the commission.
The SBSC shall have at least one public hearing each year.
Section 5. Comprehensive Southern Border Security Strategy and Southern Border Fencing Strategy.
The Comprehensive Southern Border Security Strategy must be made in consultation with the Attorney
General and the Secretary of Defense. The strategy must show effective control between AND AT ports
of entry in all border sectors.
Adds Armed Services Committees of both Houses to list of places getting the strategy.
Requires surveillance and detection capabilities to conduct continuous and integrated monitoring of
100% of the southern border.
Requires surveillance and detection capabilities to conduct continuous and integrated monitoring of
100% of the southern border.
Specifies the deployment of various technologies at each Border Patrol Sector and port of entry.
DHS must report annually to Congress on the sector-by-sector deployment of infrastructure and
Clarifies border fencing strategy covers all 700 miles.
Section 6. Comprehensive Immigration Reform Funds.
Increases funding of this section from $8.3 billion to 46 billion.
New provision mandating that the various fees for RPI, green card, non-immigrant visa programs and
other fees created by the bill must raise at least $500,000,000 in FY 2014 and $1 billion in each of FY
2015 and FY 2023. Additional surcharges may be imposed to achieve these targets.
Proved $30 billion for border patrol agents and $4.5 billion for the rest of the CSBS strategy.
$8 billion is available for the fencing strategy.
Section 1102. Additional US Border Patrol and US Customs and Border Protection Officers.
Section 1102 is amended to require the increase in Border Patrol officers to 38,405.
The increase in CBP officers shall be allocated in order to decrease waits at high volume international
airports by 50% by FY 2014 and screening air passengers within 45 minutes under normal operating
conditions or 80% of passengers within 30 minutes by FY 2015.
Sets out goals for drone numbers and hours in flight.
Requires DHS and DOD to set up a program to recruit members of military to serve in CBP and ICE.
Doubles loan repayment amounts as an incentive to attract Border Patrol agents.
Allows DHS to pay recruitment and relocation and retention allowances to DHS personnel.
Section 1107. Access to Emergency Personnel.
Adds provision requiring the deployment of up to 1000 distress beacons in areas near the northern and
southern borders in order to prevent deaths of migrants.
Section 1113. Department of Homeland Security Border Oversight Task Force.
Adds tribal officials to DHS Border Oversight Task Force.
Section 1116. Oversight of Power to Enter Private Land and Stop Vehicles Without a Warrant at the
Grants government ability to vessels, vehicles, railway cars and aircraft within 25 miles of the northern
border to search for unauthorized aliens. The government has the authority to enter private land within
10 miles of the northern border for this purpose.
Section 1117. Reports.
Renumbers this provision from 1116 to 1117. Adds a provision requiring DHS to issue a report on the
number of migrant deaths occurring near the Northern border and the Southern border and the efforts
that have been undertaken to mitigate such deaths.
Section 1119. Prohibition on New Land Border Crossing Fees.
Beginning on the date the bill is enacted, DHS may not impose any new border crossing fee on
individuals crossing the Southern border or the Northern border at a land port of entry or conduct any
study relating to imposing a border crossing fee.
Section 1123. Maximum Allowable Costs of Salaries of Contractor Employees.
Limits executives and employees of contractors on border enforcement to annual salaries limited by
OMB (currently $230,700).
Subtitle B – Other Matters
Section 1201. Removal of Nonimmigrants Who Overstay Their Visas.
Within 180 days after enactment, DHS shall initial removal proceedings, confirm that immigration relief
or protection has been pending or granted, or otherwise close 90% of the cases of nonimmigrants who
were admitted as NIVs after the date of enactment and during the most recent year period have
entered the category of having exceeded their authorized period of admission by more than 180 days.
DHS must issue semi-annual reports on overstays.
Section 1202. Visa Overstay Notification Pilot Program.
Within a year of enactment, DHS shall set up a pilot program to explore notifying individuals who have
traveled from a foreign nation to the US that their admission is about to expire.
Section 1203. Preventing Unauthorized Immigration Transiting Through Mexico.
DOS, in coordination with DHS shall develop a strategy to address the unauthorized immigration of
individuals who transition through Mexico to the US.
Title II Changes
Section 2107. Conforming Amendments to the Social Security Act.
Bars RPIs from getting credit for social security payments made between 12/31/2003 and 1/1/2014 if
the person was not authorized to work. People who had social security numbers assigned before
1/1/2004 are excepted from this. Individuals who can't produce evidence of work authorization can
submit an attestation subject to penalties for false statements.
When determining indexed monthly earnings, no credits for income in any year with no quarters of
Section 2301. Merit-Based Points Track One.
Originally, the allocated green cards for the first four years of the merit programs were to go to the EB-3
program. Now just the FY 2015, 2016 and 2017 numbers will go to EB-3. The merit program will now
start in FY 2018.
Applications for merit-based green cards starting in FY 2018 will be made once a year in the 30 day
period beginning on the first day of the fiscal year (October 1st). USCIS will review all the applications
before the end of the fiscal year (September 30th of the following calendar year) and coordinate with
DOS to provide such visas to all successful applicants.
The Changes made in this section will take effect on 10/1/2014 (originally said first day of first fiscal year
after date of enactment which could have meant 10/1/2013).
Section 2301. Merit-Based Track Two.
The 3/10 year overstay bars won’t apply to applicants for Track 2 merit-based green cards.
Section 2307. Allocation of Immigrant Visas.
The labor certification requirement won’t apply to EB-2 cases for STEM professionals as well as new
Section 2323. Ensuring Compliance With Restrictions on Welfare and Public Benefits for Aliens.
Bars the Federal Government from waiving any restrictions on immigrants’ eligibility for public benefits.
Section 2554. United States Citizenship for Internationally Adopted Individuals.
Adds a new Section 2554 to the end of Title II of the bill.
Section 104 of the original Child Citizenship Act of 2000 applied that bill’s language conferring citizenship
to certain children born abroad to US citizen parents. The original bill only applied the law to people
who qualified at the time the law was changed. The new language would make the bill apply to people
who meet the requirements regardless of when they qualify for the new benefit.
The requirement that both members of an adopting couple do a pre-adoption visit to the child abroad is
also modified. Under the amendment, only one child would have to visit.
The requirement that for a child to get automatic citizenship, the child has to be present in the US
pursuant to a lawful admission is modified to simply say that the child must be in the legal and physical
custody of the citizen parent without reference to the mode of entry.
Section 2555. Treatment of Certain Persons as Having Satisfied English and Civics, Good Moral
Character, and Honorable Service and Discharge Requirements For Naturalization.
Those who have received certain awards for their military service will be exempt from English and civics,
good moral character and honorable service and discharge requirements for naturalization.
Title III Changes
Section 3303. Mandatory Exit System.
Adds requirement that DHS submit to Committees on Homeland Security in each House within 60 days
of enactment a report on the implementation plans for the exit systems required in this section, the
wait times for travelers and the number of new officers that will be needed.
Section 3400. Short Title.
The asylum section is named the “Frank R. Lautenberg Asylum and Refugee Reform Act.”
Section 3601. Definitions.
The labor provisions originally included here now specifically exclude J-1 exchange visitors.
Subtitle I—Providing Tools to Exchange Visitors and Exchange
Visitor Sponsors to Protect Exchange Visitor Program
Participants and Prevent Trafficking
Subtitle I—Providing Tools to Exchange Visitors and Exchange Visitor Sponsors to Protect Exchange
Visitor Program Participants and Prevent Trafficking
Section 3901. Definitions.
New section that provides J-1 visitor protections. Section 3901 is a definitions section including the
following terms: exchange visitor, exchange visitor program, exchange visitor program recruitment
activities, exchange visitor program sponsor, sponsor, foreign entity, host entity and regulations.
Section 3902. Disclosure.
Anyone who engages in exchange visitor program “recruitment activity” must develop disclosure
language approved by the exchange visitor program before the visitor pays any fees. The disclosure will
- identifying information on the program sponsor, host entity and any foreign entity authorized to
- All terms and conditions of employment.
- A copy of the agreement between the visitor, program sponsor and host entity.
- Information on immigration compliance.
- A copy of the fee disclosure form listed in Section 3904(d).
- The existence of any labor organizing efforts and information on labor disputes.
- A compliance statement.
This section will have no bearing on compliance with labor and employment laws.
J-1 sponsors, foreign entities and host entities may not provide false information or excessive fees.
Sponsors must provide information on their web sites on fees.
Section 3903. Prohibition on Discrimination.
J-1 sponsors, foreign entities and host entities are barred from discriminating against individuals on
account of membership in a minority group.
Section 3904. Fees.
Within two years of enactment, DHS shall establish rules to set limits on fees charged to exchange
visitors by sponsors and other entities.
Section 3905. Annual Notification.
Requires persons seeking to be an exchange visitor program sponsor to be designated by DOS. Programs
must annually notify DOS of any third party, agent or employee involved in recruiting for the exchange
program. Any parties engaged in recruiting must agree in writing to be subject to American law and any
actions against the person will be brought in the US District Court for DC. Exchange programs must
notify DOS if it gains knowledge of violations.
DOS will issue regulations within six months implementing this section. The regulations will include
provisions allowing for discontinuing programs for up to 5 years if the following occur:
- Material misrepresentations
- The applicant has committed a felony or any crime involving fraud, robbery and various acts of
- The applicant has committed gambling offenses or offenses relating to alcohol in connection
with exchange visitor recruitment activities.
Section 3906. Bonding Requirement.
DOS shall assess bonds from program sponsors to protect exchange visitors.
Section 3907. Maintenance of Lists.
Sponsors must provide DOS and DHS with lists including information on the countries where it is
recruiting, the host entities for whom the sponsor recruits, the occupations for which the sponsor
recruits, and the states where J-1s are employed. The information shall remain private.
Section 3908. Amendment to the Immigration and Nationality Act.
Consulates shall provide information on human trafficking to J-1s.
Section 3909. Responsibilities of Secretary of State.
DOS shall have an officier at each consulate that is responsible for handling reports of violations under
Title IV Changes
Section 4101. Market-Based H-1B Visa Limits.
Clarifies that cap cannot go over 180,000. Redundant since the upper cap is 180,000 in (9)(a)(iii)
Section 4211. Modification of Application Requirements.
Exempts universities from nondisplacement provisions.
Adds universities in as exempt from dependent employer definition.
Adds universities in to skilled worker dependent exemption.
Section 4402. Classification for Specialty Occupation Workers From Free Trade Countries.
Doesn't appear to change anything but clarifying that the cap is tied to the alien and not the number of
Section 4407 J-1 Summer Work Travel Visa Exchange Program Fee.
Lowers the per participant fee from $500 to $100. And the provision barring the fee from being paid by
the visitor is taken out (presumably because the fee is a lot less now).
Section 4408. J Visa Eligibility.
Creates a new J program for Alaskan seafood processing positions.
Section 4416. International Participation in the Performing Arts.
O-1 (and accompanying O-2 and O-3 aliens) and P visa petitions (other than for athletes) must be
adjudicated not later than 14 days after the date the I-129 is submitted with the peer group letter (or
request for waiver) or within 15 days of responding to an RFE. For non-profits, if 14 days pass, the case
will be automatically converted to premium processing.
Section 4417. Limitation on Eligibility of Certain Nonimmigrants for Health-Related Programs.
B visitor and F student non-immigrants will not be eligible for federal health care benefits.
Section 4605. Nonimmigrants Participating in Relief Operations.
Eases income bar for relief workers to now prohibit direct payments from a US source as opposed to any
Section 4607. American Jobs in American Forests.
New provision. Requires forestry employers to conduct "robust" recruiting before filing H-2B
applications for these workers. That includes advertising at job fairs, placing the opportunity with state
workforce agencies, advertising in appropriate media and other appropriate efforts. Separate petitions
must be submitted for each state.
An H-2B can't be approved until the state workforce agency submits a report to DOL certifying that the
employer has complied with all recruiting requirements and there is "legitimate demand" for the
employment of H-2B non-immigrants or the employer has amended the application by removing or
modifying any deficiencies. The state must also make a formal determination that nationals of the US
are not qualified or available to fill the jobs being offered to a prospective H-2B employer.
Section 4701. Bureau of Immigration and Labor Market Research.
Ensures Alaskan seafood workers are eligible for W visas.
Title V – Jobs For Youth (New)
Section 5101. Definitions.
- Chief Elected Official
- Local Workforce Investment Area
- Low-Income Youth
- Poverty Line
Section 5102. Establishment of Youth Job Funds
A Youth Jobs Fund is established with $1.5 billion in FY 2014. It is designed to provide summer and year
round job opportunities for low income youth.
Section 5103. Summer Employment and Year-Round Employment Opportunities for Low Income Youth.
States will get funds based on plans submitted under Workforce Investment Act of 1998.
Section 5104. General Requirements.
Activities funded by this section must comply with labor and employment laws.
Section 5105. Visa Surcharge.
A $10 surcharge will be included on fees paid by employers filing green cards under the EB-3, EB-4, EB-5
and EB-6 categories as well as C, H-1B, H-1C, H-2A, H-2B, O, P, R and W visas. The surcharge ends when
$1.5 billion is raised.