Landscapers across northeast Ohio are worried about having enough workers this summer, as stated in an article by Fox 8 News. This concern stems from an inability to get enough American workers to take jobs at competitive wages and two programs that usually allow them to hire seasonal foreign workers being stalled in Congress.
When asked if they could attract more U.S. workers by paying higher wages, Ken Thiergartner of Brookside Landscape in Medina, Ohio, told Fox 8 News, “We hear that story a lot. It's a misconception. We start everyone out at $13.10 an hour. Almost double what minimum wage is.”
It was made clear throughout the article that Americans are simply not interested in filling these low-skilled positions and foreign workers are becoming more difficult to obtain.
The number of foreign workers allowed in under H2B is capped at 66,000 a year and only 33,000 for the spring/summer season.
In addition, Congress has let a program expire that allowed returning foreign workers to come back without counting against those caps.
Per the article, landscapers feel that time is running short for Congress to act with spring quickly approaching.