Another 15,000 H-2B Work Visas Approved by Federal Government
WOOLFORD, Md.- As the crabbing season continues on Delmarva, an additional 15,000 H-2B work visas were approved by the Department of Homeland Security on Friday.
While visiting Worcester County on Monday, Representative Andy Harris said it's a shame Congress waited so long to approve these extra seasonal workers.
"We've been working now for weeks with the administration to go ahead and get a number and to create the rules and regulations so that we can get these H-2B workers, these temporary workers, into our industries here on the shore that have honestly been suffering because of the lack of these visas," Harris said.
Aubrey Vincent, who owns Lindy's Seafood in Woolford, says her business is operating at about 25 percent of its normal capacity because of the limited crab pickers it currently has. Vincent says she's praying Lindy's is granted some of these extra workers. Harris says he looks forward working with local businesses to start cutting through the federal red tape.
"Hopefully we'll have enough coming into the district here so we won't lose this crabbing season and the other seasonal workers, the other industries that need seasonal workers in the district as well," Harris said.
Harris says the federal government should not have waited until the spring to begin discussing this legislation. He hopes the same problem will not affect the industries next year.
"We're going to roll up our sleeves and work toward making sure we don't have this same problem next year. Really the key is to getting Congress to act on this as soon as possible," Harris said.
Harris says there is still no word yet to how many workers will be approved for areas on Delmarva. He says he hopes to get as many seasonal workers into the businesses as soon as possible.