Thursday, December 2, 2010

DREAM Act would cost taxpayers
$6.2 billion per year, group says

From Stephen Clark of Fox News on Dec. 2:
A group advocating for tighter immigration laws estimates that a hotly debated bill that would give tens of thousands of illegal immigrants who attend college or join the military a path to legal status would cost taxpayers $6.2 billion a year and "crowd out" U.S. students in the classroom.

A new report from the Center for Immigration Studies says the so-called DREAM Act, which would give more than 2 million young immigrants brought to the United States before the age of 16 a chance to become legal residents, could erode the educational opportunities available to U.S. citizens.

The report, "Estimating the Impact of the DREAM Act," comes as Rep. Steve King, R-Iowa, seeks an analysis from the Congressional Budget Office of the legislation's cost before there's a vote. King, who issued a letter Wednesday afternoon to CBO, claims Senate Democrats are hiding an analysis that shows the legislation will cost upwards of $20 billion.

But Homeland Secretary Janet Napolitano said Thursday the CBO scored the current version of the bill in the House as neutral.

"The cost argument really doesn't hold water anymore," she said during a conference call.

The CIS says its $6.2 billion estimate is conservative and does not include the "modest" number of illegal immigrants expected to attend private institutions. The report assumes that most illegal immigrants would attend state universities and community colleges schools where both funds and slots are limited.


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