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Menendez introduces immigration reform bill that would tighten border patrol, offer clear path to residency

New Jersey’s junior senator introduced legislation Wednesday that would lay out a clear map for how undocumented immigrants could become permanent residents, according to a story in today’s Jersey Journal.

Robert Menendez introduced the immigration reform bill on Wednesday. The legislation would also increase border patrols and help family members separated by outdated laws become reunited.

The legislation would affect an estimated 11 million undocumented immigrants.

The bill – the Comprehensive Immigration Reform Act of 2010 – co-sponsored by Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., would require undocumented immigrants to register with the government, pay their taxes, learn English, pay a fine, and pass a background check in order to qualify for permanent residency.

Other measures in the bill include:

Better immigration enforcement inside the United States, including heightened penalties for criminal offenses; requirements for tracking entries and exits at the border, and rules to govern detention to ensure U.S. citizens are not unlawfully detained and detention conditions meet basic standards.

Worksite enforcement, including an employment verification system to ensure employers no longer hire undocumented workers that would be mandatory for all employers within five years.

The establishment of a commission on Immigration, Labor Markets, National Interests to evaluate labor and economic conditions and link employment visa numbers to need for workers.

Policies that put American workers first and protect labor rights by significantly expanding labor protections in several visa programs.

Programs to promote integration and English-language learning among immigrants.

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