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Las Vegas – Megan Smith, United States Chief Technology Officer, knows the importance of staying connected with startups, and few places offer more opportunity for connections than the technological smörgåsbord that is CES.

The startup economy is spreading across the globe, influencing international policy in unprecedented new ways. Administration representatives like Smith are actively seeking feedback from startups on how to design policy that makes fostering competitive, innovative businesses possible.

“The US has long been a welcoming place for native and foreign born inventors and entrepreneurs to turn their vision into a reality,” said Megan Smith, US CTO. “In the United States, immigrants and their children have founded over 40 percent of companies in the Fortune 500, collectively employing more than 10 million people and generating annual revenue of $4.2 trillion. It’s important that we continue to make it possible for highly skilled innovators from around the world to come to the United States and help create, engineer, and develop the innovations, together with native born Americans, that will keep our Nation on the cutting edge and bring jobs.”

UP Global, CES, Startup WeekendFeatured: UP Global’s Senior Vice President of Development, Enrique Godreau III and Marketing Director, Mitchell Cuevas – with Megan Smith, USA CTO. 

Smith sat down with 11 UP Global community leaders and entrepreneurs during CES to collect information on how startups are affected by the current Immigration System. Participants highlighted their most pressing issues:

  • US startups having to settle on second or third rate talent because of visa or immigration issues

  • Talent being constrained by big companies promising a green card

  • The US Immigration reputation being complicated and drawn out

As a part of its effort to modernize and streamline the US immigration system, the Obama Administration is hoping to encourage a diverse global workforce of entrepreneurs by identify new actions that would:

  • Streamline and improve the legal immigration system — including visa processing — with a focus on reforms that reduce government costs, improve services for applicants, reduce burdens on employers, and combat waste, fraud, and abuse in the system.

  • Ensure that the government issues all of the immigrant visas that Congress provides for every year, consistent with demand.

  • Modernize the information technology infrastructure underlying the visa processing system with a goal of reducing redundant systems, improving the experience of applicants, and enabling better public and congressional oversight.

This news will be welcome by startups both inside and outside the United States.

The US Government is asking for feedback on these actions – from you! UP Global believes that startups are the key to an economically sustainable future. The legislative issue of immigration has existed in the US since the 1800s and finally, instead of denying access, the US government wants to grant it. Startups need access to good talent! The US government is asking entrepreneurs everywhere to weigh in and have their voices heard.

Please visit the full Request for Information to see the complete list of questions, along with instructions on how to submit your comments and recommendations by January 29, 2015. You may respond to any or all of the focused questions, or simply submit your general comments.


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Mitchell Cuevas
(@mcuevasm) I am the Sr. Marketing Director here at Techstars, am passionate about helping entrepreneurs, and am obsessed with finding, playing with, and implementing all the best new marketing (and other) technology I can get my hands on.