By  on March 21, 2013

WASHINGTON — Retailers welcomed a bill reintroduced in the House Thursday aimed at increasing tourism by making it easier for foreign travelers to obtain U.S. visas.


Reps. Mike Quigley (D., Ill.) and Joe Heck (R., Nev.) reintroduced the Jobs Originated Through Launching Act in the House. The bill would establish a “premium processing” pilot project of traveling visas at the State Department to expedite applications; increase the amount of time Canadian visitors can stay in the U.S. to 240 days from 180 days, under certain criteria; require the State Department to make available visa appointment times during low peak periods; expedite visa processing, and establish a two-year pilot program at State that would allow officials to conduct visa interviews through secure videoconferencing.

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