SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) — California could receive almost $500 million more per year in tax revenue, more than any other state in the nation, if full legal status is granted for all its undocumented immigrants, a new report estimates.
Nationwide, the United States rakes in an estimated $1 billion in state and local taxes each year for every one million undocumented immigrants.READ MORE: Cyclist Struck By Driver In South San Jose Last Year Succumbs To Injuries
Undocumented immigrants in the United States collectively pay an estimated $11.64 billion a year in state and local taxes, according to 2013 U.S. Census data featured in a report released this week by the non-profit think tank, the Institute on Taxation & Economic Policy (ITEP).
Over a quarter of those funds, $3.17 billion, are coming from California’s population of more than 3 million immigrants who reside in the state without legal documents, the report found.
The authors of the report, Lisa Christensen Gee, Matthew Gardner and Meg Wiehe state that “undocumented immigrants’ tax contributions would increase significantly under the Obama Administration’s executive actions and even more substantially under comprehensive immigration reform granting all undocumented immigrants lawful permanent residence.”
ITEP found that state and local tax contributions in America would increase by $805 million under full implementation of the administration’s 2012 and 2014 executive actions, and by $2.1 billion under comprehensive immigration reform.
Roughly 1.5 million, or half, of all undocumented immigrants in California would be impacted by implementation of Obama’s executive actions, the report states.READ MORE: UPDATE: Police Shoot, Kill Armed Suspect Outside San Francisco Airport International Terminal; Bullet Hits Bystander
“Regardless of the politically contentious nature of immigration reform, the data show undocumented immigrants greatly contribute to our nation’s economy, not just in labor but also with tax dollars,” said Wiehe, ITEP’s State Tax Policy Director.
Last year, the Congressional Budget Office, a federal agency tasked with performing non-partisan analysis for the U.S. Congress, announced that the Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors Act, or DREAM Act, which would have granted conditional non-immigrant status to some previously unauthorized residents, would have “increased the number of authorized workers, thereby resulting in more revenues from individual and corporate income taxes and from social insurance taxes.”
Congress’ Joint Committee on Taxation estimated that passage of the Senate bill version of the DREAM Act would have increased federal revenues, not state revenues, by $2.3 billion over 10 years, whereas the House bill, which affected fewer people, would have boosted federal revenues by $1.7 billion over 10 years.
By granting legal status to all undocumented immigrants in the United States, and thereby allowing them to work legally, the U.S. would see an estimated $2.1 billion more in state and local tax revenue per year, the report’s authors found.
If full legal status for all undocumented immigrants is granted, the report found, California would benefit economically more than any other state in the nation due its massive population of undocumented immigrants.MORE NEWS: San Francisco Officials Crack Down On Illegal, Pop-Up COVID Testing Sites
By Hannah Albarazi – Follow her on Twitter: @hannahalbarazi.