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G E N E R A L      S E C R E T A R I A T


December 4, 2000



From The Secretary General

To: The Assistant Secretary, the Director General, the Assistant Secretaries, Directors, Executive Coordinators, and other Program Managers

Subject: Issuance of G-IV visas to Consultant contracted under performance contracts

Under current policies in force, the G-IV visa is available at Headquarters to staff members of the General Secretariat of the Organization of American States ("GS/OAS") as defined in Article 17 of the General Standards or to consultants retained under a performance contract ("CPR"), provided they are neither United States citizens nor permanent resident visa holders. Subject to the limitations established by the laws of the host country, the G-IV visa is also available to immediate family members of those persons.

To prevent abuses in the use of the G-IV visa issued to consultants contracted under a CPR, the following measures shall apply:

1. Except as otherwise stated below and subject to the policies of the United States Department of State and the United States Immigration and Naturalization Service, any natural person who is not a United States Citizen or a permanent resident and who is performing consulting services for GS/OAS in the United States of America under a CPR in which he/she is the principal contracting party is eligible to request the G-IV visa through the Department of Human Resource Services ("DHRS").

2. A former OAS staff member who is neither a United States citizen nor a permanent resident but who is eligible, or who has been eligible, under the laws of the United States of America for a permanent resident visa based on his/her status as former OAS staff member may not request and receive a G-IV visa as a consultant unless the former staff member first:

(a) certifies to the Director of DHRS under oath that he/she will not be present in the United States of America for more that 182 days for each of the calendar years during which the CPR is to be performed; and

(b) presents evidence acceptable to the Director of the DHRS that he/she has not been present in the United States for more that 182 days of the year preceding the year in which the CPR begins.

For purposes of counting days of presence in the United States of America, days spent as a full-time GS/OAS staff member (as defined in Article 17 of the General Standards shall not count. Examples of acceptable evidence of presence in the United States include, but is not limited to, the consultant's passports, visas, tax returns, and airline tickets.

3. The Director of the DHRS shall immediately take the appropriate measures to cancel the G-IV visa of any consultant who presents false or misleading certifications, representations, and evidence regarding that consultant's presence in the United States of America and other factors relating to the visa request. The presentation of such false or misleading certifications, and representations by the consultant shall also be grounds for termination of the consultant's CPR for cause and for permanent debarment regarding future contracting opportunities with GS/OAS.

4. The Director of the DHRS shall duly advise every consultant with a G-IV visa that the G-IV visa does not entitle the consultant to the privileges and immunities accorded staff members under the Headquarters Agreement and other applicable United States legislation; nor to tax reimbursement under the Tax Reimbursement Agreement with the United States of America. The Director of DHRS shall also inform the consultant that the G-IV visa prohibits the consultant from accepting other work for hire from persons and entities, other than public international organizations, where such work is to be performed in the United States of America, and that failure to observe that restriction may result in the revocation of the visa by the appropriate authorities.

5. Eligibility to request the G-IV visa in no way constitutes a right to have that visa issued or processed by DHRS. The Director of DHRS shall review each request on its merits and may refuse to process a request for the visa, or request the cancellation of a visa already issued, when in his/her opinion, the issuance or continuance of the visa would be inconsistent with the rationale for extending the visa privilege to GS/OAS consultants, constitute an abuse of the visa privilege, or otherwise prejudice the interests of GS/OAS.