Oct 29, 2006

Immigration Advocates Decry Proposed Rules


(AP) LOS ANGELES Fee hikes, online filing requirements and other rules threaten to hinder the ability of some legal immigrants to become U.S. citizens.

That's the warning from immigration rights advocates, who are protesting proposed federal measures. They decry application fee increases that could hit $800, a "digital barrier" of a mandatory online filing system, extensive new paperwork and a revised history and civics test they fear could be more difficult.

The coalition of more than 230 religious, labor and immigrant rights groups said the rules would disproportionately hinder Mexican immigrants, who tend to be less educated and earn lower incomes than others.

The final proposals were expected to be announced in the next few months and would take 12 to 18 months to implement.