In-State Tuition is Not Free!

Sen. Pichardo and Rep. Diaz have proposed to extend in-state college tuition rates to illegal immigrants.
Let’s be clear. Regardless of cost, offering in-state tuition rates to illegal aliens is a complete non-starter on principle. It would become yet another enticement for individuals to come here illegally – in the process, endangering themselves and breaching our sovereignty. We need to reduce, not amplify, such factors.
Hoever, it is instructive as to the legislative mindset to take a look at the more prosaic matter of cost. The in-state tuition rate does not cover the expense of that student’s education at the college or university. The balance must be picked up by others – others like out-of-state students, state tax payers and/or the institution’s privately funded endowment.
Unfortunately, the honorable solons who have submitted this bill seem not to be aware of this tuition differential and the considerable fiscal burden that it confers. Rep Diaz’s lack of awareness on this point appears especially acute.

“All children should be included in the Race to the Top,” Diaz said. “At a time of state cuts, this bill is a boon for CCRI and our state universities.”

Actually, no. Broadening the qualification for in-state tuition is not at all like increasing the number of new customers to a commercial business. On the contrary, far from being a “boon”, every additional in-state tuition payer represents an operating shortfall that the institution must attempt to cover from some other source.
Stated more bluntly, every in-state tuition rate honored is a financial drain on that institution. Naturally, the affected colleges and universities would be well within their right to look to us to pick up the losses arising from this proposed law. But the state is facing a deficit in the hundreds of millions so that doesn’t seem real feasible.
Accordingly, the question that poses itself about this bill is: how? How could a legislator propose a bill without fully understanding its financial ramifications to all affected parties, including his or her own constituency?

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Warrington Faust
Warrington Faust
10 years ago

Didn’t California learn this lesson years ago. State college/university tuition was free. So, relatively middle class kids took up residency in California for the tuition benefit.

Patrick
Patrick
10 years ago

“So, relatively middle class kids took up residency in California for the tuition benefit.” I actually asked my parents early in my HS days whether we could move to California to establish residency so I could go to a state college for free. They didn’t agree with me on the benefit. Now to some of Monique’s questions/points: In-state tuition is for Rhode Island citizens, correct? So how can you be a Rhode Island citizen if you’re not even a United States citizen? You can’t. Regardless of where you live or went to high school. Most of their parents moved to the US in part to give their child a better opportunity. Well, the fact that the kids and their parents aren’t getting deported and are being admitted to public colleges at all is a pretty damn good opportunity, regardless of whether they have to pay out of state tuition. How many kids sitting in other countries would give their right arm to pay out of state tuition to attend an American college, never mind after also getting a US high school diploma for free. “How could a legislator propose a bill without fully understanding its financial ramifications to all affected parties, including his or her own constituency?” You’re clearly kidding right? Why was Gracie trying to ban cellophane to kids in RI? h t t p : / / forum.cralri.com/viewtopic.php?f=3&t=1246&p=8096 Yet another time when she didn’t fully understand a bill that she’d submitted. And this is the same person who also told Kathy Gregg that she can’t afford to pay anything toward her health insurance because she only makes $150 a week. Seriously? She has four children and feeds them, clothes them and keeps a roof over their head for $150 a week? My BS detector is going crazy over… Read more »

joe bernstein
joe bernstein
10 years ago

Putting aside the fact that Diaz and Pichardo use ethnicity as a tool,Federal law prohibits a state that grants in state tuition to illegal aliens cannot charge US citizens and legal residents from out of state extra tuition,so the state would lose a great deal of revenue considering the differential.
I don’t believe illegal aliens should be permitted to attend state colleges under any circumstances.The Supreme Court ruled that the states must provide K-12 education to everyone regardless of immigration status.That doesn’t include college.

Warrington Faust
Warrington Faust
10 years ago

Patrick writes:
“I actually asked my parents early in my HS days whether we could move to California to establish residency so I could go to a state college for free.”
I know a few who actually did it, leaving their parents at home. Becoming a “resident” is simply a matter of declaring yourself one and performing a few administrative acts, get a driver’s license, register to vote, pay some taxes, etc.

Patrick
Patrick
10 years ago

“Accordingly, our state colleges and universities would have to close immediately”
Hmm, not a bad idea, Monique. We have CCRI, we have a college in North Providence that churns out people with teaching degrees who can’t get a job in the state, so what’s the point? And we have the state college of New Jersey down in Kingston.
I’ve spoken with others and maybe another cost savings could be to consolidate URI and RIC. Get rid of the redundant upper management, consolidate departments and turn the whole thing into URI with different campuses. Mass did it about 25 years ago with Lowell, Dartmouth and others. RI should do the same.

leprechaun
leprechaun
10 years ago

Another problem with this bill is the fact that it provides an open invitation to many more Illegal Aliens to move to R I seeking to get their children a better education. Just imagine the cost of educating all of those potential students K-12 that would arrive anticipating the In-State benifit after graduating from a R I high school. Most other states do not provide the in-state tuition benefit for Illegal Alien students. Would students be allowed to move to R I and immediately take the GED and then be allowed to enroll at our state colleges at the in-state tuition rate. If you disagree just look at the quote in today’s Projo from the young Senior at Classical High School, her parents brought her here from Brazil when she was 6 years old ” for the opportunity at a better education “. Most communities in R I can barely afford to keep their schools open now. How could they possibly afford any additional costs?

Patrick
Patrick
10 years ago

“Most communities in R I can barely afford to keep their schools open now. How could they possibly afford any additional costs?”
Lots of people have taken the same approach and ask the same question. However, how are the schools paid for? Through property taxes, right? So if a family who has been in the United States for over 200 years lives in a house/apartment or someone straight off the plane from and are living in that same house/apartment, where is the school system “losing” anything? It’s not like illegal immigrants are living in a box somewhere and paying no property tax either through the landlord or directly themselves.
I don’t get it. Why can’t the school’s afford it? Is it just that the towns have more children because of this situation? That could theoretically happen anyway with US citizens too, right? But they’re all paying for the schools through their property taxes, no?

Russ
Russ
10 years ago

Yes, what a “savings” it would be to leave these children undereducated and disenfranchised!

The tax which will be paid for [the] purpose [of education] is not more than the thousandth part of what will be paid to kings, priests and nobles who will rise up among us if we leave the people in ignorance.
–Thomas Jefferson to George Wythe, 1786.

Thank you, Rep. Diaz. You’re in good company on this one (no matter what the know nothing chorus has to say about it).

Phil
Phil
10 years ago

Thank you Russ
The chorus of no nothings sounds alot like the squalling of Anchor (Rising) babies.

joe bernstein
joe bernstein
10 years ago

Phil and Russ-before you guys go into a complete swoon over Grace Diaz-think about this:she claims she can’t pay any co-share of her GA health coverage because she is raising 4 kids on a GA salary of about $14,000 and a $150/wk job in MA.That’s about $20,000 a year.
Does she take the bus to work?Or does she have a car which is registered,insured,and inspected?How does she explain her expensive-looking suits?She didn’t get them at Walmart.
It just isn’t possible for her claim to be true.Is she on Section 8 ? Does she pay utilities?These are not snide inuendos,but legitimate questions provoked by her claim.
I wonder when Politifact will address this?Probably when Rhoda Perry becomes a command pilot on the Space Shuttle.
If you two guys can do anything but call names,try turning this one over in your minds and see how you can justify your admiration for her.I doubt either of you will attempt a meaningful response.
It IS possible she has another source of income such as a legal settlement or some Workman’s Comp payments(although she wouldn’t admit working unless she’s retarded)and if she does,she should enlighten the public.Given what she supposedly makes and having 4 children,it sounds like she’d have an address at Crossroads.

Russ
Russ
10 years ago

“So rather than break even, isn’t that more like a $9,000-$10,000 ‘loss’ per child?”
Wow, one has to wonder at people who think educating our children is an economic loss (ironically the same folks who then wonder why we supposedly can’t compete).
“If the condition of man is to be progressively ameliorated, as we fondly hope and believe, education is to be the chief instrument in effecting it.”
–Thomas Jefferson to M. A. Jullien, 1818
And, Joe, maybe you should make a point of talking to Rep. Diaz sometime. If you knew her and her story, I don’t think you’d be casting aspersions about her personal finances.

joe bernsein
joe bernsein
10 years ago

Russ-“casting aspersions”?I didn’t evenly remotely question her decency as a person or anything close-just her statements.They don’tmake sense.You deal with computrs-I interoggated people for a living(after arresting them)so we both have our skills.All families have stories.
My wife,an American born Hispanic,has a family story I’d sooner not repeat here,but she was a true hero to her three younger siblings and still has REAL scars as a result.She thinks Diaz is a lying turd.You’d do well to speak to her sometime,but she tends to stay pretty much in the family orbit because it’s just her personality..Someone has to since I am a real blog/radio loudmouth buddy.

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