California No Public Benefits for Undocumented Residents (2010)

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A No Public Benefits for Undocumented Residents ballot proposition will not be on the November 2, 2010 statewide ballot in California. Sponsors officially withdrew it from circulation on February 12, 2010. Two versions had been approved for circulation: 09-0010 and 09-0056. The earlier version, 09-0010, was not being pursued and sponsors withdrew the later version on February 12. The circulation deadline for 09-0056 would have been May 3.[1]

The proposition would have denied public benefits to certain US Citizens and to Californian residents who do not have proof of legal residence. It would have denied welfare benefits to approximately 100,000 U.S.-born children of undocumented parents who, if they were not in the country illegally, would have qualified for public assistance. As a result, some referred to it as the Birth-Certificate Proposition.[2]

Background

It was estimated in 2009 that there were 11 million immigrants living in the U.S. illegally.[2]. California's budget crisis of 2009 was said to have fuelled interest in denying public aid to illegal residents.[2]

09-0056 details

Ballot title: Denial of Public Benefits for Persons Who Cannot Verify Lawful Presence. Eliminates Benefits for Certain Children in CalWORKS Program. Initiative Statute.

Official summary: Requires applicants for state, local, and stateadministered federal aid to verify lawful presence in United States. Requires applications for public benefits submitted by undocumented parents on behalf of their lawful-resident children to be given to federal authorities. Eliminates benefits for children in CalWORKS cases where neither parent is eligible for benefits.

Estimated fiscal impact: If upheld in the courts, unknown significant one-time and ongoing costs to state and local governments due to changes in the application process for public benefits, as well as unknown but likely significant savings from decreased use of public benefits. Unknown, but probably minor, state and local law enforcement costs due to provisions in the measure creating new crimes, such as for the filing of false affidavits to obtain public benefits. If upheld in the courts, state savings of over $1 billion annually from prohibiting child-only CalWORKs cases, partially offset by state and county costs for children who shifted to Foster Care or county general assistance programs. Further unknown, but likely significant, savings from the provisions changing the application processes for public benefits.

Supporters

The official proponents were Ted Hilton, Bill Morrow, Bill Siler, and Tony Dolz.

Barbara Coe, who also supported Proposition 187 in 1994 supported this measure. She said, "illegals and their children are costing the state billions of dollars. It's invasion by birth canal."[3]

Opponents

The editorial board of the Monterey County Herald wrote on July 17, 2009 that the initiative should be blocked by a California court before going on the ballot because:

  • "It almost seems designed to create harmful, even hateful, debate without accomplishing a thing."
  • A federal court nullified California Proposition 187 (1994) on the grounds that the U.S. Constitution exclusively assigns immigration laws to the federal government, and there is no reason to think that the same thing wouldn't happen to this initiative, if it is approved by voters.[4]

See also

External links

References