Immigration Bills Tabled by House Committee
Two bills that seek to require public employers, as well as contractors and subcontractors of public employers, to register with and use the E-Verify system to reveal undocumented workers were tabled by the House Commerce Committee in Michigan on Wednesday.
HB 4024 and HB 4026, appear to be headed for approval on Tuesday, but were tabled unexpectedly for the following day.
While Rep. Dave Agema, a Republican from Grandville and the sponsor of the two bills, said that the proposed measures would prevent undocumented workers from getting paid with taxpayer dollars.
Opponents of the bills said that the measures would be an unnecessary burden on businesses because of the costs involved in running the program. They also said that it could abolish or mess up the hiring of employees because of persistent reporting errors in the system.
Ryan Bates, the executive director for the Alliance of Immigrant Rights and Reform of Michigan, said that the proposed measures are nothing more than just a political stunt.
In a June 16 Facebook posting, Agema went to great lengths to calm those in the agricultural industry, which is one of the largest employers in his suburban Kent county district, by saying that they would be exempted should the proposed measures become law.
Bates, in reaction to the posting, said, “It shows that this is a political stunt — that even the bills’ sponsor doesn’t believe that E-Verify is a worthwhile exercise for the whole economy, otherwise they wouldn’t be proposing such a narrow, limited bill. But they do believe in scoring cheap political points on the backs of working immigrant families.”