Today's Immigration Daily features several letters to the editor. Joel Stewart offers our readers his comments on the PERM regulations, as does the Staff Attorney at the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR). An attorney expresses concern that the IRS might soon end its practice of assigning Tax ID numbers to those who do not have Social Security numbers. And a law enforcement agent calls for greater information sharing at INS. Immigration Daily is a platform for the distribution of information on immigration law. We encourage readers to write with news and views to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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President Bush Signs the McCain Amendment Restoring Refugee Status to the Families of Re-Education Camp Detainees
Marc Ellis writes about the extension of a program about which "Senator McCain remarked on the floor of the Senate in June, 1997, that the Department of State had interpreted his amendment "...so as to exclude the very people to whom the provision was targeted...".
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Immigration Law News
Whitehouse Issues Fact Sheet Supporting Citizenship For Non-citizen Members Of American Military
During a Fourth of July celebration in Ripley, West Virginia, President Bush announced that he signed an Executive Order granting expedited citizenship consideration to non-citizen members of the United States military serving in active duty during the war on terrorism. The order signed by President Bush designates that our military has been engaged in armed conflict with a hostile foreign force -- namely terrorists around the globe -- since September 11, 2001. This action is consistent with actions taken by previous Administrations.
Expedited Naturalization For Military Personnel
President Bush issued an executive order making aliens and noncitizen nationals serving in an active-duty status since September 11, 2001, immediately eligible to apply to become United States citizens.
Allocation Of Funds For Refugee Services
Office of Refugee Resettlement of the Department of Health and Human Services announced allocations to States of FY 2002
funds for social services under the Refugee Resettlement Program.
INS and EOIR Seek Comments
INS is seeking comments from the public on the Form I-914, Application for Nonimmigrant Status and Form G-639. Executive Office for Immigration Review of the Department of Justice is seeking comments on the Alien's change of address form: 33/BIA Board of Immigration Appeals and 33/IC Immigration Court.
DOS Cancels Optional Form
The Department of State cancelled the Optional Form:
OF 230, Part 2, Application for Immigrant Visa and Alien Registration. This form is now a State Department form.
DOS Issues Fact Sheet On Saudi Visa Issuance
The Department of State issued a fact sheet "Myths and Facts about US Immigration Standards for Saudi Arabian Immigrants."
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Anti-Immigration Movement Is Masterminded By One Man
In an analysis of the anti-immigration movement, the Southern Poverty Law Center says "It is not often that a single individual is largely responsible for creating an entire political movement. But John Tanton can claim without exaggeration that he is the founding father of America's modern anti-immigration movement."
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Letters to the Editor
I submitted some comments to the PERM regulations of the Department of Labor which might be of interest to Immigration Daily readers. (For the comments, please click here.)
These public comments [to the proposed PERM regulations from the Department of Labor] might be of interest to your readership. (For the comments, please click here.)
Michael M. Hethmon
FAIR Staff Attorney
I am concerned that the IRS Tax ID Number may soon come to an end. As most practitioners are familiar with, for tax purposes, the Tax ID number substitutes for a Social Security number, which illegal immigrants cannot legally obtain. The Tax ID number lets them pay taxes with no questions asked about their immigration status. The IRS created the number so that it could tap into the large source of revenue generated by tax paying undocumented workers. Undocumented workers welcome the Tax ID because it allows them to comply with tax law by reporting their income. They can also claim a tax return if earned. Also, some banks are allowing them to open checking accounts using the number instead of a Social Security Number. Other benefits may be available in the future. Legislators in Illinois and several other states have sponsored bills to grant driver's licenses to illegal immigrants with tax ID numbers instead of Social Security numbers.
Naturally, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) does not penalize employers or employees for using the Tax ID number for reporting income or wages. Further, the IRS does not share Tax ID information with other agencies. However, the Social Security Administration (SSA) has no such policy and may seek to penalize employers who file wage reports to the SSA using the Tax ID number. Now, the SSA is officially proposing to the IRS that it cooperate in this effort by penalizing employers based on the number of errors submitted on their annual wage reports.
In a May 24, 2002 letter to the SSA Commissioner, the SSA Inspector General has indicated that the agency will require that beginning no later than the end of 2003, the IRS penalize employers based on the number of errors submitted on their annual wage reports. This obviously puts the IRS in a dilemma. On the one hand, the agency is busy increasing its revenue by giving seminars to illegal workers on how to use the Tax ID number. On the other hand, it will now be asked to penalize the employers of those workers. This would largely render the IRS program ineffective since no employer would allow an employee to use a Tax ID number for reporting purposes. Of course, the INS supports the SSA recommendation since it is in the business of locating and removing persons who work illegally. It will be interesting to see how the IRS treats this proposal. After all, The agency's mission is to collect taxes and the potential tax revenue that could be obtained from undocumented workers is huge. To directly attack the viability of the Tax ID Number would dramatically reduce its (our) revenue and further degrade and exploit undocumented workers. Thus, it is important that this measure not be implemented.
The entire SSA memorandum can be found at http://www.ssa.gov/oig/adobepdf/A-03-01-30035.pdf
Comments about the recommendations should be made to Assistant Inspector General for Audit, at (410) 965-9700.
Thomas W. Dean, JD,
International Law Group, PC
Miami Beach, Florida
I love the idea of a centralized agency, Homeland Security, but there is one basic principle that may be destroyed at INS, et al., unless addressed immediately! Information Sharing!
It is intuitively obvious to the casual observer, that the Ego oriented law enforcement agencies, one of which I serve, are extremely 'territorial'. Never afraid to 'pat ourselves on the back', when it comes to accolades received for a 'job well done', but past masters at playing 'The Great Houdini' when it comes to blame, for an operation that mis-fires, we can always find someone else who is responsible.
No, I am not attempting to abase Law Enforcement. I am trying to make them more effective.
Since the Secret Service has difficulty sharing info with the CIA, who has ditto with FBI, and ditto with ATF, INS, local law enforcement, ad infinitum, why does anyone want to divide (and conquer) INS?
Instead, I suggest that a long, hard, extremely close look be taken at dividing any agency at this critical point in the future of the United States. I have often said that "The dissemination of information within Immigration and Naturalization is an abomination!"
Why? It is not the fault of the Agency ! Rather, take a look at the people responsible for setting the structure of all Agencies, who do not spend time 'in the field', getting a realistic view of the effects, resulting from their decisions.
Let's make Homeland Security an effective and useful tool, to all involved!
If we do not think well in advance in our moves, in a few years, or months, we will find ourselves, without a "Queen", and Eight 'headless' Pawns fighting one another.
Unify! Do not divide! Make information accessible!
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