NCAE Legislative Efforts

Our Legislative Efforts


Find out: what’s proposed right now, our short and long-term goals, and find useful information and links on the state of legislative action around agricultural labor.

NCAE Legislative Updates


NCAE and its allies continue to work for reforms that will adequately address America’s agricultural labor needs now and in the long-term.

America’s farmers and ranchers face a critical shortage of legally authorized and experienced workers, which negatively impacts our economic competitiveness, local economies, and jobs. Every farm worker engaged in high-value labor-intensive crop and livestock production sustains two to three off-farm but farm dependent jobs. We cannot continue allowing foreign producers to take advantage of our labor crisis.

Our Goals Regarding Legislative Framework


The agricultural industry seeks a legislative framework that provides actionable solutions for agriculture’s labor needs. Including:

  1. An opportunity for current workers to obtain legal status
  2. A program to ensure an adequate, productive and competitive agricultural workforce in the future

The resulting worker visa program needs to be market-based and have the flexibility to meet the needs of all producers, including those with year-round labor needs, such as dairy and livestock.

NCAE is proud to participate in the Agriculture Workforce Coalition, a group of leading agricultural associations standing together to work with Congress for positive legislative change that will assure current and future access to farm labor that is fair to workers, farmers, and the consuming public. The Agriculture Workforce Coalition (AWC) brings together organizations representing the diverse needs of agricultural employers across the country. AWC serves as the unified voice of agriculture in the effort to ensure that America’s farmers, ranchers and growers have access to a stable and secure workforce now and in the future.

The Newhouse-Cuellar Amendment of 2019 proposed improvements to the H-2A Program for non-seasonal agricultural employers.

The Dairy and Sheep H-2A Visa Enhancement Act, proposed by Congressman Brindisi (D-NY) and Congressman Joyce (R-PA), would expand access to the H-2A visa program for dairy workers and sheepherders.

Senate 744 proposed in 2013 was negotiated by a large group of agricultural representatives but failed to move in the House.

House bill 1147 (2015), another enforcement only proposal, proposes mandatory E-Verify use but does not address the current ag workforce or offer a stable/workable future flow.

The BARN Act, reintroduced in 2015, offers some useful elements but does not address the existing workforce, nor is there much chance it could progress.

Latest News on Legislation


Get in Touch


While the NCAE focuses on advocating for Agricultural Employers at the national level, we also aim to serve as a reliable resource for our members. If you have a question or concern, send us a message.