Lack of immigration reform means worker shortage for [cheap] Colorado builders

Article author: 
Nancy Lofholm
Article publisher: 
The Denver Post
Article date: 
10 January 2014
Article category: 
Colorado News
Article Body: 

Antonio Ledezma has been trying for four months through online and newspaper ads and employment agencies in three states to hire about a dozen new laborers for his road- and bridge-building crews.

He's had only a handful of applications for the $15- to $18-an-hour entry-level concrete finishing and carpentry jobs at the Commerce City-based company he heads, Jalisco International Inc. ...

Contractors, union leaders and representatives of construction organizations across Colorado and the country are sounding the same alarm over a shortage of skilled workers that, they say, is exacerbated by Congress' failure to pass immigration reform measures in the past session. Three-fourths of construction firms are reporting shortages in national industry surveys.

...Sen. Michael Bennet, D-Colorado, has been pushing for reform and said he recognizes the effect the existing immigration system is having on construction and a long list of other industries.

"We have to fix this broken system so that it accelerates our economy, not hampers it," he said, noting that the Senate has passed a reform bill but the measure still needs House approval.

The problem in the construction industry began in 2008 when the economy went into a tailspin and construction imploded. Skilled workers left the industry for other jobs or to return to their home countries. The E-Verify system weeded out more workers with false documents ...




It is interesting to look back on the 1920s to the early 1990s. We didn't have to import cheap foreign job-seekers to build our houses. Americans did the work for an honest wage. 

The above article notes that law enforcement actually prevents foreign lawbreakers from competing with Americans to do American work. Sadly Sen. Bennet has sided with the GOP elite ("Conservative, Inc.") who want an unending stream of cheap foreign job-seekers to disrupt the law of supply and demand in the construction industry. In other words: to keep wages artifically low by hiring illegal alien labor.