Illegal immigrants have boosted Texas economy by $17.7 billion

In a report by the state’s Comptroller’s Office, Carole Keeton Strayhorn reported that illegal immigrants are not a drain on state resources, but local governments are another story.

Strayhorn tallies impact of illegal immigration
She figures a boost to the state but a high cost to local governments
— reported by the Houston Chronicle

Illegal immigrants have boosted the state’s economy by $17.7 billion and haven’t been a drain on state government — but they did cost local governments $929 million in 2005, the Comptroller’s Office reported Thursday.

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The total cost for state services was $1.15 billion, but illegal immigrants, through sales and property taxes, provided $1.58 billion in taxes for the state. That was a net positive impact to state finances of $424.7 million, Strayhorn said.

But there was a negative impact on local governments.

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Report shows economic impact of undocumented immigrants
— reported by the Houston Business Journal

Undocumented immigrants produced $1.58 billion in state fees and taxes in 2005, but local governments bore the burden of $1.44 billion in uncompensated health care costs and local law enforcement costs not paid for by the state, according to a state report.

Illegal immigrants paid $513 million in local taxes in fiscal year 2005, according to the report, released Thursday by Texas Comptroller Carole Keeton Strayhorn. When combined with the $1.58 billion in state fees and taxes, the overall revenue that illegal immigrants produced exceeded the $1.16 billion in state services, such as education, they received, Strayhorn said.

But local governments see a negative impact on costs, the report stated.

“While state revenues exceed state expenditures for undocumented immigrants by more than an estimated $420 million, local governments experience the opposite, with the estimated difference being more than $920 million for 2005,” Strayhorn said.

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Author: Paloma Cruz

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