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[Federal Register: March 17, 2000 (Volume 65, Number 53)]
[Rules and Regulations]               
[Page 14773-14780]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]
[DOCID:fr17mr00-22]                         
[[Page 14773]]
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
Part X
Department of Justice
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
Immigration and Naturalization Service
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
8 CFR Part 212 et al.

Irish Peace Process Cultural and Training Program; Interim Rule

[[Page 14774]]

-----------------------------------------------------------------------
DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE

Immigration and Naturalization Service

8 CFR Parts 212, 214, 248 and 274a

[INS No. 2000-99]
RIN 1115-AF51
Irish Peace Process Cultural and Training Program

AGENCY: Immigration and Naturalization Service, Justice.

ACTION: Interim rule with request for comments.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------
SUMMARY: The Irish Peace Process Cultural and Training Program allows 
visitors from Northern Ireland and certain designated counties in the 
Republic of Ireland to come to the United States temporarily for 
training, for employment, and to experience coexistence and conflict 
resolution in a diverse society. This rule amends the regulations of 
the Immigration and Naturalization Service (Service) by establishing 
procedures for implementing the Irish Peace Process Cultural and 
Training Program. This program is designed to provide a peaceful and 
cooperative environment in which these temporary visitors from various 
backgrounds can develop the necessary job skills to aid in the economic 
regeneration of their region.

EFFECTIVE DATE: This interim rule is effective March 17, 2000.
    Comment Date: Written comments must be received on or before May 
16, 2000.

ADDRESSES: Please submit written comments, in triplicate, to the 
Director, Policy Directives and Instructions Branch, Immigration and 
Naturalization Service, 425 I Street, NW, Room 5307, Washington, DC 
20536. To ensure proper handling, please reference INS No. 2000-99 on 
your correspondence. Comments are available for public inspection by 
calling (202) 514-3048 to arrange for an appointment.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Donna N. Crump, Adjudications Officer, 
Business and Trade Services Branch, Adjudications Division, Immigration 
and Naturalization Service, 425 I Street, NW, Room 3214, Washington, DC 
20536, telephone (202) 616-7445.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Background

What is Q-2 classification?

    The Q-2 classification is established to identify principal 
participants in the Irish Peach Process Cultural and Training Program.

How did this change in the Q classification originate?

    Legislation to create the Irish Peace Process Cultural and Training 
Program Act of 1998 (IPPCTPA) was introduced in July 1998 by 
Congressman James Walsh of New York. The IPPCTPA supports the peace 
process by offering young people from Northern Ireland and the border 
counties of the Republic of Ireland who have been subjected to decades 
of sectarian conflict the opportunity to come to the United States 
temporarily to gain valuable work skills and to experience a multi-
cultural environment. This program is designed to provide these young 
people from different communities with the necessary economic and 
cultural training to start the process of rebuilding a working, civil 
society in their home countries. On October 30, 1998, President Clinton 
signed into law the Irish Peace Process Cultural and Training Program 
Act of 1998, Pub. L. 105-319.

What Are the Provisions of the IPPCTPA?

    This legislation requires that the Secretary of State and the 
Attorney General establish a program that permits, for each of 3 
consecutive years, the annual entry of not more than 4,000 visitors 
from Northern Ireland and certain designated counties in the Republic 
of Ireland to participate in training, work, and conflict resolution 
activities. The participants are to be under 36 years of age and reside 
in designated areas which have suffered from sectarian violence and 
high unemployment. This program is designed to help these visitors 
develop job skills and conflict resolution abilities in a diverse 
society so that when they return home they can help contribute to the 
economic rejuvenation of their region and promote the peace process. 
This program has three consecutive program years: Fiscal Years (FYs) 
2000 (October 1, 1999, through September 30, 2000), 2001 (October 1, 
2000, through September 30, 2001) and 2002 (October 1, 2001, through 
September 30, 2002). The participating individuals may remain in the 
United States for up to 36 months, and spouses and minor children of 
the principal alien may accompany or follow-to-join the principal alien 
program participant. The IPPCTPA requires the Service to reduce by one 
the number of H-2B nonimmigrants admitted for every individual admitted 
under this program. On October 1, 2005, the provisions of this Public 
Law are repealed.

What Are the Eligibility Criteria for Participation?

    The legislation provides that any resident of Northern Ireland or 
the counties of Louth, Monaghan, Cavan, Leitrim, Sligo, and Donegal 
within the Republic of Ireland, who is 35 years of age or younger, is 
eligible to apply.
    Following several working meetings between officials of the U.S. 
Department of State (DOS), the U.S. Immigration and Naturalization 
Service (Service), the Training and Employment Agency of Northern 
Ireland (T&EA), and the Training and Employment Authority of Ireland 
(FAS), eligibility requirements were further defined to meet the needs 
of Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland. For participation in 
this program, the candidate must be physically resident in either 
Northern Ireland or in the designated border counties of the Republic 
of Ireland for at least 3 months immediately preceding application to 
the program and be between the ages of 18 and 35 at the time of initial 
admission to the United States under the program. In addition, 
candidates must fall within one of the following two categories of 
persons:
    (1) The first category consists of unemployed applicants: (a) who 
have been unemployed for at least 3 months, or (b) who have completed 
or are currently participating in a program of the T&A or of FAS or 
another publicly funded training and employment program. In addition, 
persons who have recently been made redundant in their employment 
(i.e., lost their job) or have received a notice of redundancy 
(termination of employment) may apply to the program immediately 
without having to wait 3 months after becoming unemployed.
    (2) The second category in this program consists of persons who (a) 
are currently employed and (b) whose current employer has nominated 
them to participate in the program for additional training and/or job 
experience that will benefit both the employee and the employer upon 
that person's return to his or her prior employment.
    The T&EA and FAS are responsible for identifying candidates to the 
program from the first category. The employers of individuals in the 
second category may nominate employees directly to the DOS' Program 
Administrator.

Why does this program have age limitations?

    The maximum age of 35 is stipulated in the IPPCTPA. The minimum age 
of 18 is needed so that there is no conflict

[[Page 14775]]

with child labor laws of individual U.S. States.

Do all individuals who successfully complete a training and employment 
program or who are recommended to the program by their employers 
automatically become program participants?

    Nomination by the T&EA or FAS or recommendation by an employer for 
program participation is the first stage of the selection process. A 
U.S. employer, approved by the DOS, must also be willing to offer 
employment or training to such individuals. All candidates must then 
meet U.S. visa and immigration requirements. If no U.S. employer is 
interested in hiring a particular candidate or if any particular 
candidate is ineligible for either a U.S. visa or admission into the 
United States, then that individual is ineligible for participation in 
this program.

Is there any petition requirement?

    There is no petition requirement for visitors under the Irish Peace 
Process Cultural and Training Program (IPPCTP). However, each candidate 
will be required to have a written certification from the DOS' Program 
Administrator indicating that he or she has been selected for 
participation in the IPPCTP prior to applying for a Q-2 visa.

How does a U.S. employer hire one of these indivduals?

    A U.S. employer interested in employing and/or providing training 
to these candidates must be approved by the DOS in accordance with its 
regulations before a visa will be issued. Interested employers may 
contact the DOS' Program Administrator for details of the approval 
process. The Department of State has designated Logicon, Inc. of 
Northern Virginia as the Program Administrator for this program through 
September 30, 2000. Logicon may be reached at 1-877-925-7484 or via e-
mail at logicon@walshvisa.net. Logicon's mailing address is Walsh Visa 
Program, Logicon, 1831 Weihle Avenue, Suite 100, Reston, Virginia 
20190-5241. Logicon has established an Internet web site for this 
program: www.walshvisa.net.

Are there any restrictions on the type of employment permitted?

    Employment must be in a field of endeavor that has been identified 
by governmental agencies in Northern Ireland and Ireland as one that 
will be useful to the economy of the region. The designated sectors 
currently include hospitality and tourism, customer service, 
information and communications technology, pharmaceuticals, 
engineering, sales, marketing and promotion, and furniture. The 
selection of additional sectors or the deletion of already identified 
sectors will occur upon the agreement of the DOS, with one or both of 
the training and employment agencies.

May the principal alien of this program bring family members?

    The principal alien may bring his/her spouse and minor children to 
the United States. These family members may either travel with the 
principal alien to the United States or join him/her at a later date. 
They will be counted in the total annual number admitted to the United 
States under this program. The visa designation for eligible family 
members will be Q-3. All family members must depart the United States 
at the end of the principal alien's program. However, those spouses or 
minor children who do not wish to accompany or follow-to-join the 
principal alien, but desire only to briefly visit the principal alien 
in the United States, might wish to avail themselves of the visitors' 
visa waiver pilot program or obtain a visitor's visa (B-2).

Are program participants eligible for the visitor's visa waiver pilot 
program?

    No, since the length of stay of these participants will be longer 
than 90 days, and thus exceeds the maximum length of stay available 
under the visa waiver pilot program. In addition, those individuals 
admitted under the visa waiver pilot program are not authorized to 
work. All principal aliens and any eligible family members in this 
program must have passports valid for the length of their U.S. stay and 
be issued either a Q-2 visa or a Q-3 visa prior to entering the United 
States. Applications for these visas may be made at either the U.S. 
Consulate in Belfast or at the U.S. Embassy in Dublin. These are the 
two posts that will be authorized to issue visas for this program.

What happens when those qualifying for participate in the program 
exceed the 4,000 annual admission limitation?

    The DOS will be tracking the processing of Q-2 and Q-3 visas to 
ensure that no more than 4,000 visas are issued in each of the three 
program years. Should there be more candidates than visas available, 
those candidates without visas will have to wait until the next program 
year to participation in the IPPCTP.

May visitors already in the United States admitted under other 
nonimmigrant visa classifications change to a Q-2?

    No, because visitors already in the United States would not meet 
one of the eligibility requirements, which stipulates that 
participation must be physically resident in either Northern Ireland or 
Ireland for at least 3 months immediately preceding application to the 
program.

Are family members able to work and go to school?

    Family members entering the United States with a Q-3 visa under 
this program are not allowed to work. The spouse and minor children of 
the principal alien may attend school without violating their Q-3 
status. Those spouses who are also principal participants and have been 
issued a Q-2 visa are eligible to work.

Will any documentation for employment authorization be issued?

    All principal aliens will have their Forms I-94, Arrival-Departure 
Record, endorsed by an Immigration Inspector at the time of inspection. 
This endorsement will authorize their employment with a specific 
employer based on the certification from the DOS' Program 
Administrator. They will not be issued a separate employment 
authorization document (Form I-766).

Will the principal aliens have to pay taxes and contribute to Social 
Security?

    The principal aliens are responsible for paying all applicable 
Federal, State, and local income taxes, employment and related taxes, 
as well as Social Security contributions on any salaries received.

How will training and conflict resolution activities be administered?

    Training or conflict resolution activities offered to the principal 
aliens will be coordinated by the DOS' Program Administrator.

What organizations are cooperating on this program?

    The DOS and the Service are working together with the T&EA and with 
FAS to make all potential participants aware of this program. These 
agencies have also encouraged nongovernmental organization to become 
involved.

Since the number of visas issued under this program reduces the number 
of H-2B visas available, what impact does the Service expect this 
program to have on the H-2B program?

    The Service does not expect the Q-2 program to adversely affect the 
H-2B

[[Page 14776]]

program. Since the establishment of numerical limitations for the H-2B 
classification in Fiscal Year 1992, the numerical limitation has not 
been reached. Based on the past demand for the H-2B classification, the 
Service expects sufficient visa numbers to be available for 
participants in both the H-2B program and the Q-2 program for the 
duration of the Q-2 program.

Why does the Service not process these participants under the H-2B 
program?

    Congress specified that the IPPCTP should have a separate 
nonimmigrant visa classification. In addition, some training and 
employment that is permissible under this program may not qualify under 
the H-2B program.

How will the Service track program participants or overstays?

    Service regulations at 8 CFR 25.1 require the participants to 
inform the Service of any address changes. This will be accomplished by 
requiring each participant to forward Form AR-11, Alien's Change of 
Address Card, to the Service through the DOS Program Administrator. The 
arrival and departure of all visitors to and from the United States in 
this program will be tracked through the use of Form I-94, Arrival-
Departure Record. The Service will identify overstays through this 
tracking system. In addition, the DOS' Program Administrator will 
monitor the program activities of each individual participant and will 
be required to inform the Service of any Q-2 or Q-3 visa holder who is 
no longer participating in this program and those who have completed 
the program but not yet departed.

What will happen if a Q-2 or Q-3 visa holder remains in the United 
States beyond his/her authorized period of stay?

    The intent of Public Law 105-319 is for the participants to return 
home to contribute to the economic regeneration of their region and to 
promote the peace process.
    Several factors will provide a strong incentive for the 
participants in this program to return home. First, the DOS' Program 
Administrator will, with the training and employment agencies in the 
cooperating counties, assist each participant to identify specific job 
opportunities in his/her home area during the course of the 
participant's stay in the United States. Every effort will be made to 
ensure a job placement before the end of each participant's U.S. 
program. Second, any participant who is no longer in valid nonimmigrant 
status and remains in the United States or who remains in the United 
States beyond the 36-month period of admission, risks being put into 
removal proceedings by the Service along with other adverse immigration 
consequences, including penalties described in section 212(a)(9) of the 
Immigration and Nationality Act (Act).

What are the Service's reporting requirements for overstays under the 
Q-2 program?

    The legislation requires the Service to compile and submit to 
Congress a report on the number of aliens admitted under section 
101(a)(15)(Q)(ii) of the Act who have overstayed their visas. Such 
reports will be submitted to Congress at the end of the third program 
year and for each of the succeeding 3 years.
    In providing these congressional reports, the Service will require 
the participants and their families to adhere to the 3-year stay 
limitations as set forth in the legislation. Their valid program time 
period will expire 3 years after the date of their initial admission, 
including any time spent outside the United States during the 3-year 
period of authorized stay. Additionally, any participant who remains 
outside the United States beyond three consecutive months will not be 
considered in valid program status. Such an individual will have to 
reapply to the program, should he/she wish to resume a Q-2 program 
activity, and will not be readmitted on the initial Q-2 visa.
    In order to provide accurate reporting, the Service will confirm 
its overstay data with the DOS' Program Administrator. The Service will 
also maintain contact throughout the program with the U.S. Consulate in 
Belfast and the Consular section at the U.S. Embassy in Dublin, as well 
as with the T&EA and FAS to verify overstays.

Explanation of changes

How is the Service amending its regulations to implement Public Law 
105-319?

    This rule revises the original Q nonimmigrant classification by 
renumbering its paragraphs in Sec. 214.2(q) and by changing the 
reference of ``Q'' to ``Q-1'' and its reference to the Act. However, 
this redesignation in no way alters the regulations or established 
procedures for participating in such a program. One technical change to 
these regulations was also made as a result of enactment of the Illegal 
Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996 (IIRIRA), 
Public Law 104-208, 110 Stat. 3546, which recodified the deportation 
charge applicable to an alien who engages in unlawful employment and 
thereby violates his nonimmigrant status (formerly 241(a)(1)(C)(i) of 
the Act) at 237(a)(1)(C)(i) of the Act. In addition, an individual 
participating in a Q-1 program will now be referred to as an 
``international cultural exchange visitor.'' The Service has removed 
any references to ``cultural visitor'' under the Q-1 program, as the 
term ``cultural visitor'' now refers to participants in both the Q-1 
and Q-2 programs.
    The Service is also revising the Q classification to add a 
paragraph addressing the new Q-2/Q-3 nonimmigrant classifications at 
Sec. 214.2(q). Paragraphs have been added at 8 CFR parts 212, 248 and 
274a concerning this new nonimmigrant classification.
    Since no substantive changes have been made in the program to be 
redesignated as Q-1, written comments submitted to the Service 
regarding this interim rule should be confined to the implementing 
rules of the Q-2/Q-3 visa classifications.
    The Service and the DOS are publishing simultaneously their 
respective rules on the Q-2 program. The two agencies have consulted 
with each other during the rulemaking process. (See the DOS' rules 
published elsewhere in this issue of the Federal Register.)

Good Cause Exception

    The Service's implementation of this regulation as an interim rule, 
with a provision for post-promulgation public comments, is based upon 
the ``good cause'' exceptions found at 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B) and (d)(3). 
The reason and necessity for issuing this regulation as an interim rule 
are as follows: (1) In order to provide for the addition of the new Q-2 
classification, the original Q classification was renumbered and 
stylistic changes were made. The technical change correcting the 
citation to the appropriate deportation charge was necessitated by the 
recodification of that charge by the IIRIRA. None of these changes were 
substantive in nature. (2) There is not enough time to issue a proposed 
rule with request for comments because the initial group of IPPCTP 
participants is scheduled to arrive in the United States at the end of 
March 2000. Publication of this regulation as an interim rule will 
expedite implementation of Public Law 105-319 and allow eligible aliens 
to apply for and participate in this program as soon as possible in 
light of the statutory expiration of the program on October 1, 2005. 
Any delay in the publication of this interim rule will result in a 
significant delay in the start

[[Page 14777]]

of the program which in turn will have a severely negative impact on 
the success of the program given that unused numbers in one program 
year cannot be carried over to the next.

Regulatory Flexibility Act

    The Commissioner of the Immigration and Naturalization Service, in 
accordance with the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 605(b), has 
reviewed this regulation and, by approving it, certifies that this rule 
will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of 
small entities. Participation in the IPPCTP is limited to 4,000 
individuals annually for three consecutive program years. This rule 
does not affect small entities as that term is defined in 5 U.S.C. 
601(6).

Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995

    This rule will not result in the expenditure by State, local, and 
tribal governments, in the aggregate, or by the private sector, of $100 
million or more in any 1 year, and it will not significantly or 
uniquely effect small governments. Therefore, no actions were deemed 
necessary under the provisions of the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 
1995.

Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act of 1996

    This rule is not a major rule as defined by section 804 of the 
Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Act of 1996. This rule will not 
result in an annual effect on the economy of $100 million or more; a 
major increase in costs or prices; or significant adverse effects on 
competition, employment, investment, productivity, innovation, or on 
the ability of United States-based companies to compete with foreign-
based companies in domestic and export markets.

Executive Order 12866

    This rule is not considered by the Department of Justice, 
Immigration and Naturalization Service, to be a ``significant 
regulatory action'' under Executive Order (E.O.) 12866, section 3(f), 
Regulatory Planning and Review, and the Office of Management and Budget 
has therefore waived its review process under section 6(a)(3)(A).

Executive Order 13132

    This regulation will not have substantial direct effects on the 
States, on the relationship between the National Government and the 
States, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities among the 
various levels of government. Therefore, in accordance with section 6 
of Executive Order 13132, it is determined that this rule does not have 
sufficient federalism implications to warrant the preparation of a 
federalism summary impact statement.

Executive Order 12988 Civil Justice Reform

    This interim rule meets the applicable standards set forth in 
sections 3(a) and 3(b)(2) of Executive Order 12988.

Paperwork Reduction Act

    This rule does not impose any new reporting or recordkeeping 
requirements. The information collection requirements (Forms I-94 and 
AR-11) contained in this rule were previously approved for use by the 
Office of Management and Budget (OMB) under the Paperwork Reduction 
Act. The OMB control number for this collection is contained in 8 CFR 
299.5, Display of control numbers.

List of Subjects

8 CFR Part 212

    Administrative practice and procedure, aliens, Immigration, 
Passports and visas, reporting and recordkeeping.

8 CFR Part 214

    Administrative practice and procedure, Aliens, Employment, Foreign 
officials, Health professions, Reporting and recordkeeping 
requirements, Students.

8 CFR Part 248

    Aliens, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.

8 CFR Part 274a

    Administrative practice and procedure, Aliens, employment, 
Penalties Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.

    Accordingly, chapter I of title 8 of the Code of Federal 
Regulations is amended as follows:

PART 212--DOCUMENTARY REQUIREMENTS: NONIMMIGRANTS; WAIVERS; 
ADMISSION OF CERTAIN INADMISSIBLE ALIENS; PAROLE

    1. The authority citation for part 212 continues to read as 
follows:

    Authority: 8 U.S.C. 1101, 1102, 1103, 1182, 1184, 1187, 1225, 
1226, 1227, 1228, 1252; 8 CFR part 2.

    2. Section 212.1 is amended by adding a new paragraph (n) to read 
as follows:


Sec. 212.1  Documentary requirements for nonimmigrants.

* * * * *
    (n) Alien in Q-2 classification. Notwithstanding any of the 
provisions of this part, an alien seeking admission as a principal 
according to section 101(a)(15)(Q)(ii) of the Act must be in possession 
of a Certification Letter issued by the Department of State's Program 
Administrator documenting participation in the Irish peace process 
cultural and training programs.

PART 214--NONIMMIGRANT CLASSES

    3. The authority citation for part 214 continues to read as 
follows:

    Authority: 8 U.S.C. 1101, 1103, 1182, 1184, 1186a, 1187, 1221, 
1281, 1282; 8 CFR part 2.

    4. Section 214.1 is amended by:
    a. Removing the word ``and'' at the end of paragraph (a)(1)(v);
    b. Removing the period at the end of paragraph (a)(1)(vi) and 
adding in its place a ``; and'';
    c. Adding a new paragraph (a)(1)(vii);
    d. Amending the table in paragraph (a)(2) by removing the entry for 
``101(a)(15)(Q)'' and by adding the entries for ``101(a)(15)(Q)(i)'', 
``101(a)(15)(Q)(ii)'', and ``101(a)(15)(Q)(iii)'' in proper numerical 
sequence;
    e. Revising the heading of paragraph (b);
    f. Adding a new paragraph (b)(4);
    g. Revising the first sentence in paragraph (c)(1);
    h. Removing the word ``or'' at the end of paragraph (c)(3)(v);
    i. Removing the period at the end of paragraph (c)(3)(vi) and 
adding in its place a ``; or''; and by
    j. Adding a new paragraph (c)(3)(vii), to read as follows:


Sec. 214.1  Requirements for admission, extension, and maintenance of 
status.

    (a) * * *
    (1) * * *
    (vii) Section 101(a)(15)(Q)(ii) is divided to create a (Q)(iii) for 
subclassification for the spouse and children of a nonimmigrant 
classified under section 101(a)(15)(Q)(ii) of the Act.
    (2) * * *

------------------------------------------------------------------------
                         Section                            Designation
------------------------------------------------------------------------

                  *        *        *        *        *
101(a)(15)(Q)(i)........................................            Q-1.
101(a)(15)(Q)(ii).......................................            Q-2.
101(a)(15)(Q)(iii)......................................            Q-3.

                  *        *        *        *        *
------------------------------------------------------------------------

* * * * *

[[Page 14778]]

    (b) Readmission of nonimmigrants under section 101(a)(15) (F), (J), 
(M), or (Q)(ii) to complete unexpired periods of previous admission or 
extension of stay--* * *
* * * * *
    (4) Section 101(a)(15)(Q)(ii). The inspecting immigration officer 
shall readmit for the unexpired period of stay authorized prior to the 
alien's departure, if the alien:
    (i) Is admissible;
    (ii) Is applying for readmission after an absence from the United 
States not exceeding 30 days solely in contiguous territory or adjacent 
islands;
    (iii) Is in possession of a valid passport;
    (iv) Presents, or is the accompanying spouse or child of an alien 
who presents, an Arrival-Departure Record, Form I-94, issued to the 
alien in connection with the previous admission or stay. The principal 
alien must also present a Certification Letter issued by the Department 
of State's Program Administrator.
    (c) * * * (1) * * * An employer seeking the services of an E-1, E-
2, H-1A, H-1B, H-2A, H-2B, H-3, L-1, O-1, O-2, P-1, P-2, P-3, Q-1, R-1, 
or TC nonimmigrant beyond the period previously granted, must petition 
for an extension of stay on Form I-129.* * *
* * * * *
    (3) * * *
    (vii) Any nonimmigrant who is classified according to section 
101(a)(15)(Q)(ii) of the Act beyond a total of 3 years.
* * * * *

    5. Section 214.2 is amended by:
    a. Revising the heading of paragraph (q);
    b. Redesignating paragraph (q)(1) as paragraph (q)(1)(iii);
    c. Adding new paragraphs (q)(1)(i) and (q)(1)(ii);
    d. Revising the heading of paragraphs (q)(2), (q)(5), (q)(6), and 
(q)(7);
    e. Revising paragraph (q)(9)(i);
    f. Adding two new sentences at the end of paragraph (q)(9)(ii);
    g. Adding and reserving paragraphs (q)(12) through (q)(14); and by
    h. Adding a new paragraph (q)(15), to read as follows:


Sec. 214.2  Special requirements for admission, extension, and 
maintenance of status.

* * * * *
    (q) Cultural visitors--(1)(i) International cultural exchange 
visitors program. Paragraphs (q)(2) through (q)(11) of this section 
provide the rules governing nonimmigrant aliens who are visiting the 
United States temporarily in an international cultural exchange 
visitors program (Q-1).
    (ii) Irish peace process cultural and training program. Paragraph 
(q)(15) of this section provides the rules governing nonimmigrant 
aliens who are visiting the United States temporarily under the Irish 
peace process cultural and training program (Q-2) and their dependents 
(Q-3).
* * * * *
    (2) Admission of international cultural exchange visitor--* * *
    (5) Filing of petitions for international cultural exchange visitor 
program--* * *
    (6) Substitution or replacements of participants in an 
international cultural exchange visitor program--* * *
    (7) Approval of petition for international cultural exchange 
visitor program--* * *
* * * * *
    (9) * * * (i) General. The petitioner shall immediately notify the 
appropriate Service center of any changes in the employment of a 
participant which would affect eligibility under section 
101(a)(15)(Q)(i) of the Act.
    (ii) * * * No further action or notice by the Service is necessary 
in the case of automatic revocation. In any other case, the Service 
shall follow the revocation procedures in paragraphs (q)(9) (iii) 
through (v) of this section.
* * * * *
    (12) (Reserved)
    (13) (Reserved)
    (14) (Reserved)
    (15) Irish peace process cultural and training program visitors (Q-
2) and their dependents (Q-3). (i) General. An Irish Peace Process 
Cultural and Training Program (IPPCTP) visitor is a nonimmigrant alien 
coming to the United States temporarily to gain or upgrade work skills 
through training and temporary employment and to experience living in a 
diverse and peaceful environment.
    (ii) What are the requirements for participation? (A) The principal 
alien must have been physically resident in either Northern Ireland or 
the counties of Louth, Monaghan, Cavan, Leitrim, Sligo, and Donegal in 
the Republic of Ireland, for at least 3 months immediately preceding 
application to the program and must show that he or she has no 
intention of abandoning this residence.
    (B) The principal alien must be between the ages of 18 and 35.
    (C) The principal alien must:
    (1) Be unemployed for at least 3 months, or have completed or 
currently be enrolled in a training/employment program sponsored by the 
Training and Employment Agency of Northern Ireland (T&EA) or by the 
Training and Employment Authority of Ireland (FAS), or by other such 
publicly funded programs, or have been made redundant from employment 
(i.e., lost their job), or have received a notice of redundancy 
(termination of employment); or
    (2) Be a currently employed person whose employer has nominated 
him/her to participate in this program for additional training or job 
experience that is to benefit both the participant and his/her employer 
upon returning home.
    (D) The principal alien must intend to come to the United States 
temporarily, for a period not to exceed 36 months, in order to obtain 
training, employment, and the experience of coexistence and conflict 
resolution in a diverse society.
    (iii) Are there any limitations on admissions? (A) No more than 
4,000 participants, including spouses and any minor children of 
principal aliens, may be admitted annually for 3 consecutive program 
years, beginning with FY 2000 (October 1, 1999, through September 30, 
2000).
    (B) For each alien admitted under section 101(a)(15)(Q)(ii) of the 
Act, the number of aliens admitted under section 101(a)(15)(H)(ii)(b) 
of the Act is reduced by one for that fiscal year or the subsequent 
fiscal year.
    (C) This program expires on October 1, 2005.
    (iv) What are the requirements for initial admission to the United 
States? (A) Principal aliens, their spouses, and minor children of 
principal aliens must present valid passports and either a Q-2 or Q-3 
visa at the time of inspection.
    (B) Initial admission for those principal and dependent aliens in 
this program who received their visas at either the U.S. Embassy in 
Dublin or the U.S. Consulate in Belfast must take place at the 
Service's Pre-Flight Inspection facilities at either the Shannon or 
Dublin airports in the Republic of Ireland.
    (C) The principal alien will be required to present a Certification 
Letter issued by the Department of State's (DOS') Program Administrator 
documenting him or her as an individual selected for participation in 
the IPPCTP. Eligible dependents may be requested to present written 
documentation certifying their relationship to the principal.
    (v) May the principal alien and dependents make brief visits 
outside the United States? (A) The principal alien, spouse, and any 
minor children of the principal alien may make brief departures, for 
periods not to exceed 3 consecutive months, and may be

[[Page 14779]]

readmitted without having to obtain a new visa. However, such periods 
of time spent outside the United States will not be added to the end of 
stay, which is not to exceed a total of 3 years from the initial date 
of entry of the principal alien.
    (B) Those participants or dependents who remain outside the United 
States in excess of 3 consecutive months will not be readmitted by the 
Service on their initial Q-2 or Q-3 visa. Instead, any such individual 
and eligible dependents wishing to rejoin the program will be required 
to reapply to the program and be in receipt of a new Q-2 or Q-3 visa 
and a Certification Letter issued by the DOS' Program Administrator, 
prior to any subsequent admission to the United States.
    (vi) How long may a Q-2 or Q-3 visa holder remain in the United 
States under this program? (A) The principal alien and any 
accompanying, or following-to-join, spouse or minor children of the 
principal alien are admitted for the duration of the principal alien's 
planned cultural and training program or 36 months, whichever is 
shorter.
    (B) Those participants and eligible dependents admitted for 
specific periods less than 36 months may extend their period of stay 
through the Service so that their total period of stay is 36 months, 
provided the extension of stay is related to employment or training 
certified by the DOS' Program Administrator.
    (vii) How is employment authorized under this program? (A) 
Following endorsement of his/her Form I-94, Arrival-Departure Record, 
by a Service officer, any principal alien admitted under section 
101(a)(15)(Q)(ii) of the Act is permitted to work for an employer or 
employers listed on the Certification Letter issued by the DOS' Program 
Administrator.
    (B) The accompanying spouse and minor children of the principal 
alien may not accept employment, unless the spouse has also been 
designated as a principal alien (Q-2) in this program and has been 
issued a Certification Letter by the DOS' Program Administrator.
    (viii) May the principal alien change employers? Principal aliens 
wishing to change employers must request such a change through the DOS' 
Program Administrator to the Service. Following review and 
consideration of the request by the Service, the Service will inform 
the participant of the decision. The Service will grant such approval 
of employers only if the new employer has been approved by DOS in 
accordance with its regulations and such approval is communicated to 
the Service through the DOS' Program Administrator. If approved, the 
participant's Form I-94 will be annotated to show the new employer. If 
denied, there is no appeal under this section.
    (ix) May the principal alien hold other jobs during his/her U.S. 
visit? No; any principal alien classified as an Irish peace process 
cultural and training program visitor may only engage in employment 
that has been certified by the DOS' Program Administrator and approved 
by the DOS or the Service as endorsed on the Form I-94. An alien who 
engages in unauthorized employment violates the terms of the Q-2 visa 
and will be considered to have violated section 237(a)(1)(C)(i) of the 
Act.
    (x) What happens if a principal alien loses his/her job? A 
principal alien, who loses his or her job, will have 30 days from his/
her last date of employment to locate appropriate employment or 
training, to have the job offer certified by the DOS' Program 
Administrator in accordance with the DOS' regulations and to have it 
approved by the Service. If appropriate employment or training cannot 
be found within this 30-day-period, the principal alien and any 
accompany family members will be required to depart the United States.


Sec. 214.2  [Amended]

    6. Section 214.2 is amended in newly redesignated paragraph 
(q)(1)(iii) under the definition of ``Duration of program'', and in 
paragraph (q)(4)(iii), by revising the term ``cultural exchange 
program'' to read ``international cultural exchange program''.

    7. Section 214.2 is amended in the newly redesignated paragraph 
(q)(1)(iii) under the definition ``International cultural exchange 
visitor or cultural visitor'' by removing the term ``or cultural 
visitor''.

    8. Section 214.2 is amended by revising the term ``a cultural 
visitor'' to read ``an international cultural exchange visitor'' 
wherever that term appears in the following paragraphs:
    a. Paragraph (q)(2)(i);
    b. Paragraph (q)(2)(ii);
    c. Paragraph (q)(3)(iv);(D);
    d. Paragraph (q)(5)(v);
    e. Paragraph (q)(10); and
    f. Paragraph (q)(11)(ii).

    9. Section 214.2 is amended by revising the term ``cultural 
visitor's'' to read ``international cultural exchange visitor's'' 
wherever that term appears in paragraphs (q)(3)(i), (q)(3)(iii)(B); 
(q)(3)(iii) (C), and (q)(6).

    10. Section 214.2 is amended by revising the term ``cultural 
visitors'' to read ``international cultural exchange visitors'' 
wherever that term appears in paragraphs (q)(5)(i), (q)(8)(ii).

    11. Section 214.2 is amended by revising the term ``cultural 
visitors'' to read ``international cultural exchange visitors'' to read 
``international cultural exchange visitors'' in the heading of 
paragraph (q)(3)(iv).

    12. Section 214.2 is amended by revising the term ``cultural 
visitors'' to read ``international cultural exchange visitors'' 
wherever that term appears in the following paragraphs:
    a. Paragraph (q)(3)(iv) introductory text;
    b. Paragraph (q)(4)(ii)(A);
    c. Paragraph (q)(5)(iii), (q)(5)(iv), and (q)(5)(v);
    d. Paragraph (q)(6); and
    e. Paragraph (q)(9)(iii) (A)

    13. Section 214.2 is amended by revising the reference ``section 
101(a)(15)(Q)'' to read ``section 101(a)(15)(Q)(i)'' wherever that 
reference appears in the following paragraphs:
    a. Newly redesignated paragraph (q)(1)(iii) under the definition 
``Qualified employer''
    b. Paragraph (q)(2)(ii);
    c. Paragraph (q)(5)(v);
    d. Paragraph (q)(7)(iii) and (q)(7)(iv);
    e. Paragraph (q)(10); and
    f. Paragraph (q)(11)(i).

    14. Section 214.2 is amended by revised the term ``Q status'' to 
read ``Q-1 status'' whenever that term appears in the following 
paragraphs:
    a. Paragraph (q)(2)(i) and (q)(2)(ii); and
    b. Paragraph (q)(3)(i) and (q)(3)(ii).
    15. Section 214.2 is amended by revising the term ``Q visa'' to 
read ``Q-1 visa'' in paragraph (q)(5)(ii); and by revising the term ``Q 
nonimmigrant'' to read ``Q-1 nonimmigrant'' wherever that term appears 
in paragraph (q)(11)(i).

    16. Section 214.2 is amended by revising the reference to ``section 
241(a)(1)(C)(i)'' to read ``section 237(a)(1)(C)(i)'' in paragraph 
(q)(11)(i).

    17. Section 214.2 is amended by revising the term ``cultural 
visitors` '' to read ``international cultural exchange visitors' '' in 
paragraph (q)(4)(ii)(B).

PART 248--CHANGE OF NONIMMIGRANT CLASSIFICATION

    18. The authority citation for part 248 continues to read to 
follows:

    Authority: 8 U.S.C. 1101, 1103, 1184, 1187, 1258; 8 CFR part 2.


Sec. 248.3  [Amended]

    19. In Sec. 248.3, paragraph (a) is amended in the first sentence 
by

[[Page 14780]]

revising the reference to ``Q'' to read ``Q-1''.
    20. Section 248.3 is amended by adding a new paragraph (d) and 
revising paragraph (e)(2) to read as follow:


Sec. 248.3  Application.

* * * * *
    (d) Special provisions for change of nonimmigrant classification 
from Q-2 classification. Any alien classified as a Q-2 nonimmigrant, 
who requests a change to another nonimmigrant classification, must file 
Form I-539, with appropriate free, to the Nebraska Service Center. Any 
spouse or minor children of the principal alien who are in the United 
States and who are also classified as either Q-2 or Q-3 nonimmigrants 
may be included in the application.
    (e) * * *
    (2) An alien classified under sections 101(a)(15)A) or 
101(a)(150(G) of the Act as a member of the immediate family of a 
principal alien classified under the same section, or an alien 
classified under sections 101(a) (15) (E), (F), (H), (I), (J), (L), 
(M), or (Q)(ii) of the Act as the spouse of child who accompanied or 
followed-to-join a principal alien who is classified under the same 
section, may attend school in the United States, as long as the 
immediate family member, spouse, or child continues to be qualified for 
and maintains the status under which the family member, spouse, or 
child is classified.
* * * * *

PART 274a--CONTROL OF EMPLOYMENT OF ALIENS

    21. The authority citation for part 274a is revised to read as 
follows: Pub. L. 101-410, 104 Stat. 890, as amended by Pub. L. 104-134, 
110 Stat. 1321;

    Authority: 8 U.S.C. 1101, 1103, 1324a; 8 CFR part 2

    22. Section 274a.12 is amended by:
    a. Revising paragraph (b)(15); and
    b. Adding a new paragraph (c)(23), to read as follows:


Sec. 274a.12  Classes of aliens authorized to accept employment.

* * * * *
    (b) * * *
    (15) An international cultural exchange visitor (Q-1), according to 
Sec. 214.2(q)(1) of this chapter. An alien may only be employed by the 
petitioner through whom the status was obtained;
* * * * *
    (c) * * *
    (23) An Irish peace process cultural and training program visitor 
(Q-2), pursuant to Sec. 214.2(q)(15) of this chapter and 22 CFR 41.57 
and 22 CFR part 139. An alien in this status may only accept employment 
with the employer listed on the Certification Letter issued by the DOS' 
Program Administrator.
* * * * *

    Dated: March 15, 2000.
Doris Meissner,
Commissioner, Immigration and Naturalization Service.
[FR Doc. 00-6818 Filed 3-16-00; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4410-10-M



							  


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