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[Federal Register: April 18, 2006 (Volume 71, Number 74)]
[Rules and Regulations]               
[Page 19805-19806]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]
[DOCID:fr18ap06-2]                         

=======================================================================
-----------------------------------------------------------------------

DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services

8 CFR Part 204

[CIS No. 2106-00]
RIN 1615-AA47

 
Special Immigrant Visas for Fourth Preference Employment-Based 
Broadcasters

AGENCY: U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, Department of 
Homeland Security.

ACTION: Final rule.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: This rule adopts, without change, the interim rule published 
by the former Immigration and Naturalization Service (Service) in the 
Federal Register on October 11, 2001, that established procedures under 
which the International Broadcasting Bureau of the United States 
Broadcasting Board of Governors, or a grantee organization, could file 
immigrant visa petitions for foreign language alien broadcasters. The 
rule explained the requirements that alien broadcasters must meet in 
order to be the beneficiary of an immigrant visa petition. The public 
did not submit any comments to the interim rule.

DATES: This final rule is effective May 18, 2006.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Alanna Ow, Adjudications Officer, 
Business and Trade Services Branch, Office of Program and Regulations 
Development, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, Department of 
Homeland Security, 111 Massachusetts Avenue, NW., 3rd Floor (ULLICO), 
Washington, DC 20529, telephone (202) 616-7417.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Background

    Section 203 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) provides 
for the allocation of preference visas for both family and employment-
based immigrants.\1\ The fourth preference, employment-based category 
(EB-4), allows for the immigration of a variety of aliens who possess 
various specialized job skills or abilities. Id. at 203(b)(4). Section 
101(a)(27) of the INA also offers definitions of the various jobs or 
professions that aliens must hold or possess in order to qualify for 
the EB-4 category.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \1\ The first preference, priority workers, allows for the 
immigration of workers with extraordinary abilities in the sciences, 
arts, education, business, or athletics; outstanding professors and 
researchers; and certain multinational executives. Id. at 203(b)(1). 
The second preference allows for the immigration of professionals 
holding advanced degrees. Id. at 203(b)(2). The third preference 
allows for the immigration of skilled workers in short supply and 
professionals holding baccalaureate degrees. Id. at 203(b)(3).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

Legislative and Regulatory History

    On November 22, 2000, President Clinton signed the Special 
Immigrant Status For Certain United States International Broadcasting 
Employees Act (IBE Act), Public Law 106-536. Section 1 of the IBE Act 
amended section 101(a)(27) of the INA by adding a new subparagraph. The 
amendment established a special fourth preference employment-based 
immigrant category for immigrants seeking to enter the United States to 
work as broadcasters in

[[Page 19806]]

the United States for the International Broadcasting Bureau of the 
United States Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG) or a BBG grantee. 
(Currently, BBG grantees are Radio Free Asia, Inc. and Radio Free 
Europe/Radio Liberty, Inc.)
    On October 11, 2001, at 66 FR 51819, the former Service published 
an interim rule in the Federal Register that added 8 CFR 204.13 and 
established an administrative procedure for the BBG and its grantees to 
use in order to petition for the services of an alien broadcaster. The 
interim rule also codified the provisions of the IBE Act and put into 
place procedures for the BBG, its grantees, and former Service 
officers, now U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) 
officers, to follow.

Why Does the BBG Need Alien Broadcasters?

    The BBG and its grantees are charged by Congress to broadcast 
internationally on behalf of the United States Government. This 
requires that the BBG attract and retain a large number of foreign 
language broadcasters. These broadcasters must have the unique 
combination of native fluency in the broadcast language combined with 
an in-depth knowledge of the people, history, and culture of the 
broadcast area. Historically, the BBG has experienced difficulty in 
finding and employing members of the domestic workforce possessing this 
unusual combination of skills to meet the United States Government's 
international broadcasting needs.
    By creating a new special EB-4 subcategory, the IBE Act allows the 
BBG and its grantees to directly petition for alien broadcasters. Being 
able to offer immigrant status to an alien broadcaster and his or her 
spouse and children may assist the BBG in fulfilling its obligation as 
the international broadcasting conduit for the United States 
Government. Under section 203(b)(4) of the INA, only 100 such visas may 
be made available in any fiscal year to alien broadcasters coming to 
work for BBG or a BBG grantee. This numerical limitation does not 
apply, however, to the spouses and children of such immigrants.

Did the Former Service Receive Any Comments on the Interim Rule?

    The former Service did not receive any comments during the 60-day 
comment period in response to the interim rule. Accordingly, the 
Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is now adopting the interim rule 
as a final rule without change.

Regulatory Flexibility Act

    DHS has reviewed this regulation in accordance with the Regulatory 
Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 605(b)), and, by approving it, certifies that 
this rule will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial 
number of small entities. The October 11, 2001, interim rule provided a 
special process that benefits individuals who will be coming to the 
United States to work as broadcasters. It did not affect small entities 
as that term is defined in 5 U.S.C. 601(6). Since this final rule does 
not make any changes to the interim rule, this final rule likewise will 
not affect small entities.

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 one year, and it will not significantly or 
uniquely affect 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 DHS to be a ``significant regulatory 
action'' under Executive Order 12866, section 3(f), Regulatory Planning 
and Review. Accordingly, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has 
waived its review process under section 6(a)(3)(A).

Executive Order 13132

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

Paperwork Reduction Act

    Under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, Public Law 104-13, all 
Departments are required to submit to OMB, for review and approval, any 
reporting requirements inherent in a rule. This rule does not impose 
any new reporting or recordkeeping requirements under the Paperwork 
Reduction Act.

List of Subjects in 8 CFR Part 204

    Administrative practice and procedures, Aliens, Employment, 
Immigration, Petitions.


0
Accordingly, the interim rule amending 8 CFR part 204, which was 
published in the Federal Register at 66 FR 51819, on October 11, 2001, 
is adopted as a final rule without change.

    Dated: April 11, 2006.
Michael Chertoff,
Secretary.
[FR Doc. 06-3655 Filed 4-17-06; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4410-10-P




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