The US Department of Labor has unveiled a new tool to help employers and others understand how to comply with requirements under the H-1B visa program, which allows for the temporary employment of foreign workers in the U.S. in certain specialty occupations.An online “advisor,” available at http://www.dol.gov/elaws/h1b.htm(link is external), describes the program’s standards and provides detailed information about employers’ and workers’ rights and responsibilities. It outlines notification requirements, monetary issues, worksite issues, recordkeeping, worker protections and enforcement.“The Labor Department’s goal is to provide employers and the public with user-friendly information regarding both rights and responsibilities under the H-1B program,” said Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis. “The new online advisor harnesses technology to help take the mystery out of the new rules, and it offers an important resource to workers and employers alike.”The H-1B nonimmigrant visa classification was created under the Immigration and Nationality Act to help employers who cannot obtain needed skills and abilities from the U.S. workforce by authorizing the employment of qualified individuals who are not otherwise authorized to work in the U.S. The act establishes certain standards to protect similarly employed U.S. workers from being adversely affected by the employment of foreign workers under the H-1B program, as well as to protect H-1B workers themselves.Responsibilities for the H-1B visa program are shared among the Labor Department’s Office of Foreign Labor Certification and the department’s Wage and Hour Division, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service and the U.S. Department of State. The new advisor tool focuses solely on compliance with the requirements enforced by the Wage and Hour Division. The tool does not review the process for participating in the program or for invoking H-1B visa portability.The H-1B Advisor is one of a series of Employment Laws Assistance for Workers and Small Businesses, or “elaws,” advisors developed by the Labor Department’s Office of the Assistant Secretary for Policy, working with other department agencies, to help employers and employees understand federal employment laws. To access the set of advisors, visit the elaws website at http://www.dol.gov/elaws(link is external). To learn more about the Labor Department’s role in administering the Immigration and Nationality Act and the H-1B visa program, visit the department’s Office of Foreign Labor Certification website at http://www.foreignlaborcert.doleta.gov(link is external) and its Wage and Hour Division site at http://www.dol.gov/whd(link is external).# # #Source: U.S. Department of Labor releases are accessible on the Internet at http://www.dol.gov(link is external). The information in this news release will be made available in alternate format (large print, Braille, audio tape or disc) from the COAST office upon request. Please specify which news release when placing your request at 202-693-7828 or TTY 202-693-7755. The Labor Department is committed to providing America’s employers and employees with easy access to understandable information on how to comply with its laws and regulations. For more information, please visit http://www.dol.gov/compliance(link is external).
Anthony Linkenhoker was the winner when the Virginia Sprint Series opened Saturday night at Natural Bridge Speedway. (Photo by Jim Haines)By Jim HainesNATURAL BRIDGE, Va. (April 14) – Spring finally sprung for the Virginia Sprint Series and Anthony Linkenhoker sped to the IMCA RaceSaver victory Saturday at Natural Bridge Speedway.Mike Keeton challenged throughout in a contest that ran caution-free and ended in second. Daren Bolac was third in the series opener, postponed a week because of winter-like weather.Linkenhoker and Keeton paced the field to green with Linkenhoker out first, Keeton close behind and Tony Harris up to third. Bolac got by Harris and went after Keeton lap after lap, but the bottom was the place to be and he stayed there.Linkenhoker stayed smooth up front even as he caught the rear of the field and that was all he needed to do as he drove under the waving checkered flag.Next it’s back to Shenandoah Speedway on Saturday, April 21.Feature results – 1. Anthony Linkenhoker; 2. Mike Keeton; 3. Daren Bolac; 4. Tony Harris; 5. Tom Humphries; 6. Jerald Harris; 7. Bill Rice; 8. Jake Karklin; 9. Chris Ware; 10. Neil Sandridge.