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  1. #1
    Senior Member American-ized's Avatar
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    Dec 2008
    Monroe County, New York

    RI: Bill would grant in-state tuition for illegal immigrants

    Bill would grant in-state tuition for illegal immigrants
    February 15, 2011

    A proposed bill at the State House would grant in-state tuition rates for students who attend at least three years of high school in Rhode Island and graduate, regardless of their immigration status.

    Classical High School senior Amanda Pereira said at a news conference Tuesday that the bill, called the Student Equal Economic Opportunity Act, would give deserving students a chance.

    "We are hard working individuals and who need this opportunity to be able to succeed and to go to college," Pereira said.

    Antonio Albizures is a recent charter school graduate who said he can't afford to pay out-of-state tuition, which is more than double the rate of residents.

    "I will not receive any break of any shape, way or form. I would have to pay the same amount they are paying," he said.

    Supporters said the bill is ultimately good for the economy.

    "Not only are they losing out on the tuition, but we as a state are losing knowledge when you talk about the knowledge economy," said state Sen. Juan Pichardo, D-Providence.

    Critics call the proposed legislation very unfair.

    "But then you have someone who comes in, who came here illegally and broke the law to get here and they are going to pay the same tuition rate as someone who lives in Rhode Island. I think it's wrong. I think it's an outrage," said state Rep. Peter Palumbo, D-Cranston.

    Students at Rhode Island College, one of the schools where the bill would apply, had very mixed reaction.

    "I think it's definitely good because students that are here trying to better themselves need all the help they can get," one student said.

    "If you're not here legally, do what you can to be here legally. There's a fair way to get in. Do your work and then you can come to college," another student said.

    Under the bill, the student has to have filed an application for lawful immigration status and if they have not, they have to do so "as soon as he or she is eligible."

    The bill was introduced by state Reps. Grace Diaz, Edith Ajello, Agostinho Silva and Anastasia Williams. ... ar-397351/

  2. #2
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    Nov 2006
    TEXAS - The Lone Star State

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