06/28/11

SUPPORT FOR THE ELECTRONIC EMPLOYMENT ELIGIBILITY VERIFICATION SYSTEM (E-VERIFY)

SAN DIEGO - The San Diego County Board of Supervisors today approved a recommendation from Chairman Bill Horn and Supervisor Dianne Jacob to explore potential benefits of implementing the federal Electronic Employment Eligibility Verification System, commonly known as E-Verify.  E-Verify is an online program that can be used by the private and public sectors to determine if an applicant is eligible for legal employment in the United States.

Chairman Horn said, “The reality is that businesses and local governments can unknowingly hire ineligible employees. In this tough economy, ensuring that jobs are going only to those who can legally be employed is a reasonable goal that will protect businesses and eligible job-seekers.”

The E-Verify system compares employee information, such as Social Security numbers, to records kept by the Department of Homeland Security and the Social Security Administration. If implemented, the County of San Diego would use E-Verify to screen future county employees and could determine whether county contractors should also be required to use the program.

“I believe a primary way to deter illegal immigration is to turn off the jobs magnet,” said Supervisor Dianne Jacob. “Right now, our County is operating under the honor system. E-Verify closes the loop. This is the County's attempt to see whether this federal tool is more effective than the measures we currently have in place.”

The recommendation directs the Chief Administrative Officer to explore the feasibility of using E-Verify during the hiring process for potential new County employees and report back to the Board of Supervisors within 90 days.