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10/24/05 What`s the future for AgJobs bill?
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Program: Idaho Ag Today
Date: October 24, 2005

President Bush says a 32 billion dollar homeland security bill he signed last week will make our borders safer thanks in part to increased patrols. At the same time the White House is pushing for legislation that will allow undocumented workers to get work visas. Idaho Senator Larry Craig insists that Idaho agriculture will suffer if it doesnt have a migrant labor workforce. He says tightening the border in Arizona and California is already impacting agriculture in those two states.

CRAIG Already theres a severe labor shortage there and theyve come to Congress asking for help. Theres also labor shortages on the processing lines in Idaho as it relates to fruit packing and potato processing.

Craigs Ag Jobs legislation is still one of five proposed immigration reform bills under consideration by the Congress. He says doing nothing is not an option.

CRAIG We could collapse American agriculture and you could see produce rotting in the fields not only in Idaho but across our country.

Some GOP leaders in the House and Senate say Congress should deal with enforcement before it gets involved in guest worker programs or demands for those types of workers.

Voice of Idaho Agriculture
Bill Scott

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