If you agree that it would be desirable to bootstrap knowledge-based industries in rural timber counties with the H1B Visa provision ( see the background paper), we ask your help by communicating with various legislators and officials who are in a position to make this happen.
At present there is a window of opportunity in that the Secure Rural Schools program has expired. There is a provision to extend it for one year that was included as an amendment to the Transportation Bill, passed by the Senate March 14, 2012.
We suggest emailing, writing, and/or calling your Representative in the House and those representatives who have been active in the Secure Rural Schools effort, listed below. (Postal mail can be sent to the local office, but mail sent to Washington is not advised because of delays caused by security procedures.)
As language for an email/letter, we suggest something like the following:
Dear Congressman/Congresswoman [insert name];
I would appreciate your consideration of an innovative idea that could help develop the economy of rural timber areas that are now depressed because of low timber harvests. This idea requires only the inserting of a single sentence into federal law, as follows:
"Individuals in the H1B visa program are exempt from the quota if they reside in a county with a population less than 150,000 that contains land within the National Forest system."
For details on how this would work please see the enclosed paper. [if paper is printed out in a letter]
For details on how this would work please refer to the following: http://www.tabletmountain.com/timber
The following legislators have been closely involved with the Secure Rural Schools effort (click on their name for contact information):
U. S. House of Representatives
Martin Heinrich (New Mexico)
Shelley Berkeley (Nevada)
Earl Blumenauer (Oregon)
Peter DeFazio (Oregon)
Jay Inslee (Washington)
Ben Lujan (New Mexico)
Jim Matheson (Utah)
The following are legislators for California timber areas: