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Congress Passes Another Short-Term Spending Measure Through Dec. 20, Temporarily Extending Key Immigration Programs

Congress has voted to temporarily extend federal government funding through December 20, 2019. The spending measure means that federal functions – including immigration operations – should continue uninterrupted through December 20, 2019, while FY 2020 budget negotiations continue. The bill now goes to President Trump, who is expected to sign the measure.

Temporary extension of expiring immigration programs

The interim spending bill temporarily extends the following programs without change through December 20:

  • E-Verify;
  • The EB-5 regional center permanent residence program for foreign investors;
  • The Conrad 30 waiver program for foreign medical graduates working in areas of the United States that are underserved by physicians; and
  • The special immigrant non-minister religious worker program.

These programs were initially set to expire on September 30. In late September, Congress passed a measure extending them to November 21, 2019 while budget negotiations continued.  With budget negotiations still ongoing, Congress has passed another short-term measure.

What the short-term spending measure means for employers

Passage of a temporary spending measure means that there should be no interruption of federal operations for now, though a government shutdown could occur if there is no agreement on FY 2020 appropriations legislation or a further temporary measure by December 20, 2019.

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