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House OK’s instate tuition for immigrants, sending it to Scott

by John Kennedy | May 2nd, 2014

Children of undocumented immigrants would be eligible for instate tuition in Florida under legislation that sailed Friday through the House on an 84-32 vote.

The legislation cleared the Senate a day earlier. It now goes to Gov. Rick Scott, who promised to sign it into law this election year.

House Republicans noted the legislation will reduce tuition for all students.

The measure (CS/HB 851) eliminates a provision in law that allowed Florida’s 12 public universities to hike tuition by as much as 15 percent annually. Instead, only Florida State University and the University of Florida will be able to seek tuition boosts higher than what’s granted by the Legislature — and then only as much as 6 percent-a-year.

But the instate provision for immigrants has been the chief focus of the legislation.

“I hope this signals an end to the anti-immigrant extremism that has prevailed in both of these houses for over a decade,” said Rep. Jose Rodriguez, D-Miami.

The legislation allows children of undocumented immigrants to qualify for instate tuition if they attended high school for three years in Florida.  Average non-resident tuition costs $21,434 annually, compared with the average $6,318
in-state fee.


10 Responses to “House OK’s instate tuition for immigrants, sending it to Scott”

  1. Robert Rega Says:

    If it wasn’t a re-election year, this bill would never have made it out of the first reading. The Republicans and Scott play to the base even if it is against what they truly believe. In this case, the bill is a good thing. Maybe there are other bills that can be passed by the Republican legislature before November that will be good for everyone. It doesn’t matter who gets it done as long as it is done.

  2. Rick Says:

    Election year politics stinks. Doesn’t it republicants?

  3. bugsy914 Says:

    Say thank you Democrats to Gov. Scott and the Republicans. Charlie Crist could not accomplish this nor much of anything else in his term.

  4. Sandra Carey Says:

    The tea party/ republicans has continued to crippling the economy. . With reckless decisions ( after Bush departure) ..While Scott make decisions to benefit himself/ partners. .. knowingly that Floridians will be affected. US citizens are denied benefits/ programs inwhich ..their tax dollars provided. While foreigners get them. Unfair

  5. Jim Says:

    Why do the newspapers always say “immigrants” in the headlines and you have to read into the article to see that it’s really talking about “undocumented” (i.e. illegal) immigrants?

  6. jean cobb Says:

    this is ridiculous……

  7. Lori Says:

    Much ado about nothing. Florida Statute 1009.21 states that “A depend child who is a UNITED STATES CITIZEN may not be denied classification as a resident for tuition purposes based solely upon the immigration status of his or her parents.” The key here being citizen, which means they were either A) born in this country or B) are older than 18 and have gone through the naturalization process. And it doesn’t automatically grant them in state tuition; they still have to provide acceptable documentation that proves they lived in the state continuously for the 12 month period before applying. This is more a humanitarian bill than an immigration issue.

  8. USAinsanity Says:

    Insane. This is going to create an influx of students coming to live here with their Aunts, Cousins etc. in their Freshman year of high school just to get instate tuition. Our Government has just created anothe reason to get more ILLEGAL people into our country. The burden is too much for us financially to handle any more!

  9. Sean Says:

    Dear PBPost,
    Please publish the names of the legislators who voted for this, so the taxpayers of Florida may take note. Thank you.

  10. Dion Cook Says:

    What about us LEGAL immigrants on E-2 business visas??? Here LEGALLY,
    invest large amounts in businesses, create jobs, pay taxes, work hard….Our children
    are not allowed social security numbers so they can’t work??? Then when
    they reach 21 they have to find their own visa or they have to leave??? One of their limited options is an F-1 STUDENT VISA where they have to pay out of state fees. My family of 4 from England, has run a business for almost 10 years and
    not so much as a parking ticket between us, yet we have to renew visa /
    driving licenses every 2 years and live in a ‘limbo status’ with no
    path to even a green card and a constant worry of our children ‘aging
    out’. So much is being said for all the ILLEGALS…..what about us and
    the thousands of LEGAL business owners and their families in the same position. Why isn’t my children and the children of other LEGAL families included in this bill???????
    Outrageous and very unfair!

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