One of the key sections of the comprehensive immigration reform bill was a section that would have required all employers to use an electronic employment verification system. Such a system exists today and it is called the Basic Pilot program. Only 15,000 employers currently use the system and it has had its share of problems.

The states have started passing bills to require companies to use the system (Arizona, Georgia and Tennessee are all examples) and now it looks like Congress is about to massively expand use of the system in a less public way than the CIR bill. A provision in the House's Labor/HHS appropriations bill contains the following section:

SEC. 521. None of the funds made available in this Act may be used to enter into a contract with an entity that does not participate in the basic pilot program described in section 403(a) of the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996 (8 U.S.C. 1324a note).

A key question will no doubt be whether USCIS is capable of accepting the huge increases in the number of participants in the program. And where are the funds to support this increase in participation?