The bill that will see the price of some US Visa applications rise has passed and is now waiting for Obama's signature.
23 December 2010
US Visa fee hike to fund 9/11 heath care bill passes Congress
The US Congress has passed the bill to create a $4.3 billion fund to provide free medical treatment to those suffering from illnesses as a consequence of participating in the rescue or clean up at the Ground Zero site of the 9/11 terror attack.
The James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act will remain open for five years, not the originally proposed 10 year time frame.
Money for the fund will be raised from a new two per cent excise on goods and services purchased from contractors from countries WTO's Agreement on Government Procurement, as well as an increased fee on certain categories of H-1B and L1 US Visas.
The H-1B and L1 visas mainly affect offshore Indian IT companies who bring in specialised workers to complete short-term contracts for projects.
The Senate passed the bill with unanimous consent and the House voted on the bill late last night 206 to 60. The bill now moves to the White House for US President Barack Obama to sign into law.