Rep. Hastings unsure on E-Verify bill

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YAKIMA, Wash. (AP) -- Republican Rep. Doc Hastings says he's not sure yet if he'll back the new E-Verify bill being considered in Congress, citing concerns over its impact to the agricultural industry.

The Yakima Herald-Republic reports that Hastings said Friday the new bill has to have special consideration for the agricultural industry.

E-Verify is a federal program that allows employers to electronically check employment eligibility of those who apply for jobs. The new bill would require U.S. businesses to use the government database to verify that new workers are in the country legally.

But the agricultural industry is worried that expanding E-Verify without passing immigration reform would cause an economic catastrophe for producers and consumers because most U.S. citizens won't seek such labor-intensive jobs..

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Information from: Yakima Herald-Republic, http://www.yakimaherald.com