Oct. 7, 2004 – On October 1, the first day of the US fiscal year, the government reached the self-imposed cap on H1-B employment visas for the entire year.
Foreign-born, non-immigrant workers employed temporarily in the US in certain jobs are required to have an H-1B visa. Congress set the visa cap at 65,000 for the 2005 fiscal year. The number includes 58,200 workers who petitioned for visas on October 1, and 6,800 visas earmarked for Chile and Singapore in "free trade" agreements.
Government officials told the Kansas City Star they would return all H-1B petitions received after October 1.
Businesses were split over the impact of the cap, with some saying that it would protect jobs for American workers, and others saying it will result in a loss of highly-educated foreign-born workers.