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 Post subject: My Statement in Opposition to SB207
PostPosted: Sun Apr 07, 2013 10:54 pm 
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Statement in opposition to SB207 delivered to Indiana House Education Committee on April 4, 2013

Senators have said this is a very limited bill which will only grant in-state tuition to a small number of illegal immigrants. Guesstimates range from a few hundred to a few thousand illegal immigrants. However, a recent newspaper article said that an amendment would be offered today to expand the number of illegal immigrant students who can receive this benefit.

Numbers are important but they can be boring to talk about. I have passed out copies of my research and calculations which I previously faxed to you. So, please look at the information which boils down to this: In the “best case” scenario where only 200-300 illegals receive the benefit of in-state tuition rates, Indiana will lose $4-6 million in revenue. If the “worst case” scenario happens where all out-of-state citizen students are treated equally under federal law (8USC 1623) some 30,000 citizen students will be owed tuition rebates totaling over $484 million for one year. These calculations were based on information from the National Center for Education Statistics website. The handouts include calculations for IU, PU, Ball State, Indiana State, University of Southern Indiana and Vincennes.

For some reason, all the illegals seem to know about this bill but few out-of-state citizen students seem to know. Since only half of college grads find full-time jobs in this terrible economy plus they have huge student loans to pay off, I would think they’d be very interested to know they are owed rebates of $20,000 per year. Indeed, IFIRE has already started passing out flyers at IUPUI to inform the students of their rights. We are also partnering with national campus organizations to spread the word.

Even though illegal immigrant students should never have received in-state tuition rates in the first place, legislators seem to think it was unfair to “change the rules” on them in the middle of the game.
What about the legal foreign students who followed all the rules to attend school here? Why should they have to pay higher tuition than those whose parents broke the laws in order to give their children an unfair advantage? When law abiding foreign students find out about SB207, they may want to sue under the Equal Protection Clause of the U.S. Constitution.

Let me tell you a personal story about changing the rules in the middle of the game. If you will open the Broken Dreams booklet, you will see a photo of my son as he looked before he went to Iraq. My son was promised federal tuition assistance when he joined the Army. While serving in Iraq, his truck was blown up by an IED. He suffered multiple shrapnel injuries to his face and arms and is blind in one eye. He spent a year in Walter Reed where he had 7 surgeries. He is a disabled veteran who has returned to college. His tuition assistance was just cut. Talk about changing the rules. He is a voter, taxpayer and homeowner who has done nothing wrong. But if SB207 passes, his taxes will be used to help subsidize tuition for illegal immigrants who will then compete against him for scarce jobs. The unemployment rate for veterans is estimated at 12%.

Also pictured in the Broken Dreams booklet are other Purple Heart recipients. If these brave veterans wanted to attend college in Indiana, they would have to prove legal residency before they could receive the benefit of in-state tuition rates (SB177). But illegal immigrants will receive this benefit by simply enrolling in an Indiana college (SB207). According to federal law 8 USC 1623, these veterans should receive the same benefits as illegal aliens without having to prove anything. Why should our veterans be treated like second class citizens?

On the topic of changing the rules in the middle of the game, I thought you were supposed to represent me and my son. When did this change? These illegal immigrant students and their parents cannot legally vote for you. Can they prove they paid ALL their taxes like I can? Please explain to me how they get to lobby you for special legislation to benefit them while disadvantaging me and my son? Please explain why you fight so hard for them but have no compassion for me and my son.
Thank you for hearing me out. I urge you to vote against SB207.

Cheree Calabro, co-founder
Indiana Federation for Immigration Reform & Enforcement


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 Post subject: Re: My Statement in Opposition to SB207
PostPosted: Sun Apr 07, 2013 11:21 pm 
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This is the follow up letter sent to the House Education Committee Members after the April 4 hearing:

Dear Representative

It seemed obvious to me that the committee lacks sufficient information to move forward on SB207 (in-state tuition for illegal immigrants). I think it should be tabled until the financial and legal ramifications can be fully and fairly studied.

It doesn’t seem like any one, besides me, has even tried to estimate the costs. The Fiscal Impact Statement was wholly inadequate. It said, “The impact is unknown but probably minor.” What’s your definition of minor?

The number of illegal immigrants who could qualify for this benefit has been estimated at low of 200. Yesterday, it was revealed that the amendment would expand this to nearly 6,000 illegal immigrant children. According to my calculations, that would create an approximate revenue loss ranging from $4,000,000 to $120,000,000. In addition, if veterans and non-resident citizens are treated fairly and equally under 8 USC 1623 of the federal law, they will be owed over $484,000,000 in tuition rebates.
If the state universities are so flush with cash that they lobby for lower tuition rates for illegal aliens, why is the Indiana Education Commissioner already asking for even more money from us taxpayers?

What do you have to say about the information I gave the committee? If you think it’s wrong, please explain to me why. How do you estimate the costs?

I was stunned that the committee was relying for advice on Angela Adams, the local immigration attorney who worked with the ACLU to sue the State of Indiana seeking to overturn 2 portions of Indiana’s immigration enforcement law (S.E.A. 590). Aren’t there impartial, unbiased attorneys who are paid for by the citizens of Indiana who could advise you on this? I don’t understand why this wasn’t done before the bill advanced out of the Senate. It sure seemed like the committee had a lot of unresolved questions about the law.

The committee seemed inclined to believe Adams’ interpretation of 8 USC 1623. I continue to assert that it’s ridiculous to think that Congress was simply trying to ensure that Indiana residents could keep their in-state tuition benefits if those same benefits were extended to aliens unlawfully residing here. The law obviously intends to protect citizens residing in the other 49 states.
http://www.heritage.org/research/report ... ederal-law

I know some legislators are doing their darndest to parse the language in this bill so you can give illegal aliens this benefit without appearing to violate federal law. That is both fundamentally wrong and immoral! But, whether SB207 mentions the word “residence” or not, that is the ONE thing that is required before someone can attend our public schools or graduate from our high schools or enroll as an in-state student in our colleges.

This whole bill is an affront to the law-abiding people of Indiana. I’m tired of being forced to pay for other people’s mistakes. In no way is this bill fair to the majority of citizens in Indiana who you are supposed to represent. I urge you again, vote NO on SB207!

Cheree Calabro, co-founder
Indiana Federation for Immigration Reform and Enforcement


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