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Thread: Refugees cost taxpayers $60K-$133K — more than for illegal immigrants

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  1. #1
    Administrator Jean's Avatar
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    May 2006

    Refugees cost taxpayers $60K-$133K — more than for illegal immigrants

    by Paul Bedard
    | March 02, 2020 11:18 AM

    Even more than immigrants, especially those in the United States illegally, refugees who enter the country and tap into social welfare programs cost taxpayers $60,000-$133,000, according to a new analysis.

    In its latest report on the costs to U.S. citizens for its welcoming immigration and refugee policies, the Center for Immigration Studies said it was bringing accuracy to the issue of costs to help policymakers in the immigration field.

    It said that the reports on refugee costs are inaccurate, do not include all programs refugees tap, and do not take into account the education level of new arrivals, a key to whether they will be a burden or not.

    “In reality, the fiscal impact of refugee resettlement is just one aspect of a more complex issue involving economic, social, and political considerations. The purpose of this report is not to argue that all refugee resettlement is wrong, but rather to remind policymakers that there are costs associated with the program,” said the authors of The Fiscal Impact of Refugee Resettlement: No Free Lunch for Taxpayers.

    “Specifically, we find that the average refugee will cost around $60,000 in net present value over his or her lifetime, with adult refugees costing upwards of $133,000. These costs are due mainly to the low levels of education possessed by refugees upon their arrival,” they added.

    The refugee issue has been a hot one under President Trump. He has cut the numbers of refugees allowed into the U.S. each year and has asked states to say if they want refugees.

    In addition, over time, the federal government has shifted some of the costs to states.

    In its report, CIS said that some reports on refugee costs are inaccurate because they do not include all programs refugees tap. Further, the reports lump the more educated refugees who arrived a generation ago, with today’s refugees who arrive much less educated. The report states that refugees who arrived a generation or two ago were often quite educated, but government data indicates that today’s refugees only have nine years of schooling on average.

    Steven Camarota, the center's director of research and co-author of the report, said, "The low education attainment level of so many of today's refugees means they need a great deal of government assistance. Given these costs, policymakers have to decide if it makes more sense to settle a modest number here or help many more people overseas."

    His key points pulled from the report:

    *"The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine developed a model that estimates the lifetime fiscal impact of new immigrants, counting all taxes paid and services consumed at the federal, state, and local levels. Educational attainment is the most important predictor in the model. Generally speaking, highly educated immigrants will contribute more in taxes than they consume in services, while immigrants with low levels of education will contribute less than they consume."

    *"Based on data from the Annual Survey of Refugees, one-third of refugees between the ages of 25 and 64 completed no more than the sixth grade before their arrival in the United States. About 53 percent have less than a high school diploma. Only 18 percent have education beyond high school."

    *"Because the National Academies model is based on all immigrants at each education level, some adjustments are required for refugees who, unlike most immigrants, impose administrative costs for resettlement and can access welfare payments immediately. After these adjustments, our cost estimate rises to $60,000 per refugee."

    *"Although the fiscal impact of refugees is negative overall, it differs significantly across age groups. Refugees who enter as adults (age 25 and over) have a large negative impact under every plausible model. Refugees who enter as children may have a positive impact, although this requires optimistic assumptions about mobility."

    *"No plausible model, not even the National Academies’ best-case scenario, comes close to suggesting that refugees who enter as adults will be net fiscal contributors. Refugee-specific costs add about 22% over and above the cost of other immigrants, but low education by itself is enough to push adult refugees' estimated fiscal impact well into negative territory. The National Academies is more optimistic about the children of low-skill adult immigrants, whom the model assumes will surpass their parents' education levels. But even with favorable assumptions about refugee children, the overall impact (all age groups combined) is still clearly negative."
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  2. #2
    Moderator Beezer's Avatar
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    Apr 2016
    Cheaper to put them in Safe Zone near their countries and let the U.N. foot the bill for it.

    U.S. taxpayers should not be paying for this burden!
    hattiecat likes this.


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