What follows is a brief summary of the I-Squared Act.
Raise the general H-1B cap from 65,000 to 115,000
Allow the cap to go up (but not above 195,000) within any fiscal year where early filings exceed cap and require the cap to go down in a following fiscal year (but not below 115,000) if usage at the end of any fiscal year is below that particular year’s cap
Remove the 20,000 limit for the Masters’ cap
Reform fees on H-1B visas and employment-based green cards; use money from these fees to fund a grant program to promote STEM education and worker retraining to be administered by the states
Grant employment authorization for H-4 visa holders
Establish a grace period during which foreign workers can change jobs and not be out of status and restore visa revalidation for E, H, L, O, and P visas
Allow dual intent for foreign students at US universities
Enable the recapture of green card numbers that were approved by Congress in previous years but were not used, and continue this policy going forward through the roll-over of unused green cards in future fiscal years to the following fiscal year.
Exempt certain categories of persons from the employment-based green card cap:
Dependents of employment-based immigrant visa recipients
US STEM advance degree holders
Persons of extraordinary ability
Outstanding professors and researchers
Eliminates per-country limits for employment-based green cards
Increases per-country limits for family-based green cards from 7% to 15%
The I-Squared bill would remove many of the artificial limits on obtaining temporary work visas and permanent residence for the next generation of entrepreneurs and leaders in science and technology. Providing more visas for these innovators will, in turn, create additional jobs for US workers.