By Baxter Colburn
A Door County staple could soon be taken away due to a new initiative from President Trump. Unfortunately, since the announcement of the President’s Buy American/Hire American initiative, it places the popular J-1 Student Visa summer program at high risk.
Phil Berndt of the Door County Visitor Center says his phone hasn’t stopped ringing since this new initiative came down. The main callers, concerned local business owners that participated in the J-1 Summer Work Travel program.
Door County’s economy ebbs and flows with the season of tourists passing through the summer months and even into early fall. Once those tourists head home, the harsh reality for local businesses begins to settle in. If the J-1 program is officially disallowed, the result could be catastrophic for Door County, says Berndt.
If President Trump’s initiative takes effect, Door County could be out almost 440 employees next summer.