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  • Is Oregon's Tuition Equity Legislation Really Equal?

    2/6/2013 4:07:57 PM Posted by Patrick Coyle

    Expensive EducationBy Brendan Pringle 

    California, New York and even Texas have already passed controversial "tuition equity" legislation for illegal immigrant students.

    Now, Oregon is trying to follow suit, and has just introduced legislation on the issue.

    This proposed legislation would permit Oregon high school graduates living in the U.S. illegally to attend public universities for in-state tuition rates.

    In response to the pressure to remain "inclusive," Oregon university presidents, the Oregon Education Association, and the American Federation of Teachers have backed these proposals.

    Could it be that these groups are simply crossing their fingers for more taxpayer funding?

    Regardless, someone has to pay for it, which means that either Oregon taxpayers or legal Oregon students have to take the hit. The bill will ultimately force them to subsidize $14,000 of every illegal immigrant's education. The legislation would incur a sharp decrease in revenue from the countless out-of-state students displaced by the new competition.

    This does not even account for the broader impact of encouraging more illegal immigrants to break the law, which is already costing the state's taxpayers approximately $1 billion per year, according to estimates by the Foundation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR).

    In addition, the legislation remains blatantly unfair to those students who are legal citizens of our country.

    Students who reside outside the state of Oregon are forced to pay three times more tuition than their illegal counterparts whose parents happen to have settled the State of Oregon. Granted, illegal immigrant children have no control over the state in which they live; however, neither do the legal citizens who wish to attend a public university that is outside of their home state.

    Should illegal immigrants be given a cheaper education than our own citizens?

    Moreover, if Oregon hopes to follow California’s footsteps, one could only expect legislation granting illegal immigrant students equal access to state-sponsored educational aid in the near future. If that happens, Oregon students should plan for the same downward spiral of rising tuition and declining educational value in Oregon that we have seen in the Golden State.

    Brendan Pringle is a Development Officer at Young America's Foundation's Reagan Ranch Center. 

    • Readers' Comments

    • Absolutely not. It is simply not fair! They broke (or their parents did) the law coming here, they should recieve no benefits at all. I live in CA, and it's a real problem here.
      Posted by Kasey on 02/08/2013
    • The parents may have broken the law. The kids did not. Kids are not responsible for their parents' "crimes." The youngsters will become educated and make valuable contributions to Oregon's economy.
      Posted by Domenico on 02/08/2013
    • Did the kids of legal citizens break the law? No. But they have to still pay triple the tuition of in-state students. It's their lack of fortune that their parents decided to reside in a different state.
      Posted by Dude on 02/09/2013
    • State tuition has to to do with residents and the taxes people pay. People pay taxes in one state. Undocumented workers pay taxes. They do. Their kids therefore should benefit from in-state tuition.
      Posted by on 02/09/2013
    • Ay, mi madre!!! What part of "this nation is broke" do we not understand? Despierta ,America!!!
      Posted by Spicy Mexican Salsa on 02/11/2013
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