House Panel Approves Bill to Help Farmers Hire Immigrant Labor

Colorado House of Representatives
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Denver (AP) A house committee has approved a measure to help farmers hire temporary workers from Mexico.

The committee approved the bill today after agriculture groups warned that farmers face a crisis if they can't hire enough crews in time for the harvest.

Republican State Representative Marsha Looper of Calhan says Colorado farmers can't afford to pay up to $10,000 to recruit immigrant workers and help them wade through government bureaucracies.

She says the state could hire labor firms that operate in Mexico to find workers and help iron out procedural problems.

Opponents say the federal program that issues temporary visas exploits the workers. They also say immigration needs a nationwide solution, not a state-by-state approach.