Amendment enabling H-2Bs on Guam successfully added to NDAA, vote expected today

Congressman Michael San Nicolas (PNC file photo)

Amendment 515, which enables H-2B labor on Guam, was successfully added to the 2021 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) in Congress today, Congressman Michael San Nicolas reported.

According to San Nicolas, the amendment was passed with a unanimous voice vote in favor as part of an en bloc amendment.

Since 2017, Guam’s commercial, construction, and housing industries have suffered from the sudden loss of access to H-2B labor for civilian projects, with the Guam Economic Development Authority (GEDA) estimating up to $1 billion in canceled or delayed private sector projects because of this problem.

Amendment 515 to the NDAA “extends H-2B exemptions contained in section 1045 of P.L. 115-232 for skilled construction labor related to military realignment projects to civilian projects throughout Guam.”

In order to secure the amendment for consideration, San Nicolas said the House Armed Services Committee (HASC), the Committee on Natural Resources (NRC), and the Committee on the Judiciary (Judiciary), all needed to authorize it.

The vote on the full NDAA is expected tomorrow.