Wilner & O'Reilly, APLC
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Proposed California DREAM program may benefit immigrant students

A proposal has made its way through the California legislature intended to assist young people who are not yet citizens to receive a college education. Known as the California DREAM loan program, the aim of the bill is to provide financial assistance to such young people who wish to study at certain California colleges.

Those immigrants eligible for such financing would have to be considered of good moral character, have graduated from a United States high school and have entered the U.S. as minors. Beneficiaries will also be required to have lived continuously in the U.S. for a specified period of time. A similar DREAM Act was proposed in Congress, but that bill has stalled. 

The bill has not received unanimous support. Some opponents feel that such a bill would encourage illegal crossings by parents who would like to see their children take advantage of such a program. There may even be a certain amount of opposition as to the manner in which state funds should be used. Some would like to see any state surplus used to pay off debts or be set aside for future use. Still, the bill has been making its way through the Senate and could still pop up on Governor Jerry Brown's desk.

Education is a driver in our nation's economy and that's why so much legislation has been devoted to our state and nation's future workforce. This is also why attorneys, legislators, activists and businesses would like to see legislation and employment-based solutions implemented that will help immigrants out. Yet like everything else, there will be dissension when it comes to any piece of legislation.

Source: Latin Post, "US Immigration Reform News: California DREAM Loan Program Moves Farther in State Senate," Rodrigo Ugarte, May 25, 2014

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