“Washington is on the verge of becoming the fourth state to provide college financial aid to undocumented immigrants, after the legislature there last night passed the state’s own DREAM Act with strong bi-partisan support.
“Here in New York, making the DREAM Act a reality will also require support across conferences. Fortunately, there is a growing consensus among business, labor and Republican and Democratic leaders across the country, both on the need for immigration reform and the obvious economic benefits of reform. We saw evidence of that last night in Washington.
“That consensus is building because of the growing recognition that the DREAM Act is an investment in the workforce of tomorrow that would pay for itself many times over in increased tax revenues; and that with the demand for higher-skilled workers increasing, it only makes sense to encourage our young people to pursue higher education
“There is also an increasing realization that the young people who would benefit from the DREAM Act are as American as Thanksgiving. They arrived at an early age and don’t know any country but the United States. Their hearts are here and so are there futures.
“Let’s help them better provide for themselves and their families, contribute more to the economy and fully integrate into the American mainstream.”
Sen. Jose Peralta, a Democrat and prime sponsor of a bill to create a state DREAM Act, invoked conservative Texas Gov. Rick Perry in urging his Republican colleagues to support the measure.
"We have an opportunity here in New York to build on the growing national consensus, among business, labor and Republican and Democratic leaders, on both the need for immigration reform and the obvious economic benefits of reform.”
The Peralta DREAM Act bill would allow allow state financial assistance to go to the college kids of illegal immigrants.
Perry signed a different version of the DREAM Act that allows the kids of undocumented immigrants to pay in-state tuition at Texas state colleges.
"And clearly there is the political will for campaign financing, but not for helping young immigrants get a college degree.
“Senate Republicans argued against using tax dollars for campaign financing, just as they had previously argued against spending tax revenue on the DREAM Act.
"But whereas the Senate’s house budget features campaign financing, it excludes the DREAM Act, kicking to the curb, yet again, the hopes and aspirations of young people whose zeal to live, work, pay taxes and prosper in this great country is being held against them.
"I am happy about the inclusion of campaign financing, which I wholeheartedly support. I am deeply disappointed and frustrated by the exclusion of the DREAM Act.
"I call on the governor and my Republican Senate colleagues to seize the opportunitywe have here in New York to build on the growing national consensus around theneed for immigration reform and the obvious economic benefits of doing right by our young people.”
State Senate leaders are balking at efforts to give the DREAM Act a second life as part of the state’s budget.
The measure, which came two votes short of approval in the Senate earlier this week, is not being discussed in budget negotiations, said Bronx Sen. Jeff Klein, leader of the Independent Democratic Conference.
The DREAM Act would enable the children of undocumented immigrants to receive state tuition assistance. After the bill failed in the Senate, Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver (D-Manhattan) said he would push to include as part of the budget.
Students and activists rallied outside Gov. Cuomo’s office Thursday pushing for him to include the DREAM Act in the budget.
Senate Democratic Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins (D-Yonkers) and Sen. Jose Peralta (D-Queens) also sent a letter to Cuomo urging him to push for the measure in the budget.
I would call them the legion of gloom and doom, but that would greatly exaggerate their numbers and significance.
I am talking about the people trying to sell the idea that Monday’s state Senate vote on the DREAM Act — 30 in favor, 29 opposed — was somehow a “near-fatal blow” or an “enormous setback” because the bill, which would grant state tuition aid to undocumented immigrants, fell two votes short of passing.
That prognosis is entirely blind to political reality or is the product of wishful thinking.
The conventional wisdom back in the summer, when planning for the current legislative session began, was that election-year dynamics would keep the DREAM Act from making any kind of progress during the 2014 legislative session.
What nobody saw coming back then was the wave of progressive zeal that would be ushered in by the election of Mayor de Blasio.
Nueva York – Cuando parecía olvidada, la propuesta de ley para que inmigrantes indocumentados soliciten licencias de conducir sumó el respaldo de la organización Transportation Alternatives, que promueve el uso del transporte público, y The Worker's Justice Center of NY, entidad pro trabajadores agrícolas del norte del estado.
El apoyo de esta última es clave por el área donde opera ya que puede sumar el respaldo de residentes y legisladores de Albany, Kingston y Rochester.
El senador José Peralta (D-Queens) argumenta que su propuesta de licencia para indocumentados aborda dos asuntos críticos, "oportunidad económica y seguridad en las calles, y por eso el apoyo a esta legislación seguirá creciendo".
Sin embargo, hasta ahora ese no ha sido el caso. Las dos principales legislaciones migratorias presentadas, el Dream Act y las licencias para indocumentados, se han estancado en la legislatura a pesar que Nueva York es un estado demócrata y progresista.
Ambas propuestas han sido introducidas más de una vez pero según expertos, ni los políticos ni los activistas han sabido articular su importancia económica.
Inside City Hall hosted a debate on the merits of the state Dream Act, a bill that would give college financial aid to undocumented immigrants with State Senator Jose Peralta, a Democrat from Queens and a leading opponent, Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis, a Republican whose Assembly district covers parts of Staten Island and Brooklyn.
QUEENS — Roosevelt Avenue in Jackson Heights is “a mecca of human trafficking” where women from countries including Mexico, the Dominican Republic and Venezuela are being sexually exploited, elected officials said Thursday.
And Queens is the center of the city's trafficking problem, with nearly 60 percent of the city's victims who come forward looking for help.
Roosevelt Avenue has a number of brothels, state Sen. Jose Peralta, who represents Corona, Elmhurst and Jackson Heights, said at a press conference where he discussed an initiative to provide foreign-born victims of sex trafficking with free legal representation on immigration issues.
“Roosevelt Avenue is a mecca of human trafficking in Queens and throughout the five boroughs,” Peralta said.