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A look at California's effort to build an H-1B firewall

Patrick Thibodeau | July 3, 2015
California lawmakers are considering a bill that would make it difficult for state-regulated utilities to replace U.S. workers with H-1B workers. It may be one of the most significant anti-offshoring measures in years.

The state's legislative analysis of the bill also notes that "the part of any computer system that is most vulnerable to being compromised is the personnel who operate the system."

This bill, if it becomes law, will complicate the offshoring of IT work by utilities. It may become difficult to use H-1B workers who are supervised by contractors, and not directly by the utilities, on utility IT projects.

AB 853 recently passed solidly in the state Assembly by a 50-25 vote and awaits action in the state Senate. If it clears its remaining hurdles, California may be building an anti-offshoring firewall around its utility industry.

 

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