The State Senates of Louisiana and Pennsylvania have overwhelmingly passed legislation – Louisiana Senate Bill 66 and Pennsylvania Senate Bill 637 – that would require state contractors to use the government’s E-Verify electronic employment eligibility verification system to verify that the workers they hire are legally eligible to work in the United States. Both bills now head to the Houses in their respective states for consideration.
Louisiana Senate Bill 66 (SB 66), which the Louisiana Senate passed by a 34-to-1 margin, would require state contractors to use E-Verify for verification of legal work status of employees by private employers seeking to contract with state agencies. In addition to the use of E-Verify, SB 66 would also require continuous checks by the contractor during the life of the state contract or else their state contracts could be terminated by the state for non-compliance. SB 66 – sponsored by state Senator Neil Riser (R-Columbia) – will now head to the House for consideration. If passed by the House, the bill would go into effect in 2012.
Pennsylvania Senate Bill 637 (SB 637), which the Pennsylvania Senate passed by a 47-7 margin, would require that all contractors and subcontractors performing work on publicly funded projects to, prior to the execution of the work, provide a verification statement that ensures the employees on the job are legally permitted to work in the United States by checking their status with the online E-Verify system. SB 637 mirrors the regulation that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) put into effect in 2009 which requires all federal government contractors to verify the legality of their entire work force through E-Verify. SB 637 – sponsored by state Senator Kim Ward (R-39) – will now be sent to the House of Representatives for consideration.
E-Verify is a free on-line federal government program that checks information on the Employment Eligibility Verification Form I-9 that all new hires must complete against DHS and Social Security Administration (SSA) databases to verify that they are legally eligible to work in the United States. A Designated E-Verify Employer Agent such as Employment Screening Resources (ESR) – a nationwide background screening provider accredited by The National Association of Professional Background Screeners (NAPBS®) – can help employers comply with E-Verify requirements. To learn more about E-Verify services from Employment Screening Resources, visit http://www.esrcheck.com/formi9.php.
For more information about Louisiana Senate Bill 66, visit http://e-lobbyist.com/gaits/LA/SB66.
For more information about Pennsylvania Senate Bill 637, visit http://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/billinfo/billinfo.cfm?syear=2011&sind=0&body=S&type=B&BN=0637.
About Employment Screening Resources (ESR): Founded in 1997 in the San Francisco Bay area with a mission to help employers and employees maintain safe workplaces, Employment Screening Resources (ESR) is accredited by The National Association of Professional Background Screeners (NAPBS®) and wrote the book on background checks with ‘The Safe Hiring Manual’ by founder and President Lester Rosen. For more information about ESR, visit http://www.ESRcheck.com or email ESR News Editor Thomas Ahearn at tahearn@ESRcheck.com.