In-State Tuition For Illegal Aliens: When Did the Board of Regents Acquire the Constitutional Ability To Appropriate?

Patrick highlights the recommendation by a Board of Regents panel that the state offer to illegal aliens the ability to attend state colleges at the much lower tuition rate paid by in-state residents. The ProJo 7 to 7 News Blog reports that the Board of Regents Board of Governors for Higher Education is expected to adopt the recommendation at its September 26 meeting.
That’s interesting because, as I understand, the Rhode Island Constitution confers the power of taxing and spending solely on the legislature.
But in order for in-state tuition to be broadened (to any additional group), the state would have to pick up the shortfall between in-state tution and the actual cost to educate the student. For the University of Rhode Island, that shortfall is $12,500+ per student.
Accordingly, I will be calling the offices of Speaker Fox and Governor Chafee tomorrow to ask each of them the following:
1.) How do they feel about the Board of Regents’ Board of Governors for Higher Education’s apparent intention to add hundreds of thousands of dollars to the state’s budget shortfall and
2.) More importantly, how do they feel about the Board of Regents Board of Governors for Higher Education doing so by usurping the power of the legislative branch.

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Bucket Chick
Bucket Chick
10 years ago

Pensions are underfunded and might be re-amortized, and yet, there is money for this? How is this fiscally justified? I’m sure everyone, if asked, has a list of things they would love the state to spend tax dollars on (my streets, sidewalks and curbstones come to mind) but at the end of the day, if we don’t have the money to meet the obligations that have already been made (regardless of how unsupportable those promises were), how can we offer such a discount? Is Santa Claus involved?

Justin Katz
Justin Katz
10 years ago

Monique,
You’re not understanding how things work in the Chafeedom.
Don’t like the way a city is dealing with financial difficulties? Appoint a receiver.
Don’t like the way its school committee is negotiating with unions? Have the receiver appoint new negotiators.
Don’t like the messy process of dispersing former highway land? Appoint a panel with astonishingly broad powers.
Disappointed that the legislature didn’t create a healthcare exchange? Create one via executive order.
And, of course, this blends with some old favorites:
Don’t like the way talk radio treats you? Boycott it and suggest that advertisers put it out of business.
Don’t like the arguments of pesky constituents who don’t agree with you? Refuse a meeting and declare your deliberations complete.
Chafed’s administration is essentially a (barely) elected aristocracy.

joe bernstein
joe bernstein
10 years ago

As I so crudely put it in the first post on this,it’s Chafee is in this up to his neck-this is truly an issue for recall.Exceeding his constitutional powers by extralegal means.
The sneakiness of the inbred aristocracy knows no bounds.

joe bernstein
joe bernstein
10 years ago

A few other misconceptions-“foreign nationals”are entitled to in state tuition as long as theye are permanent residents;certain classes of non-immigrants;or refugees.
Second,and very important-the term “path to citizenship’is widely used and totally inaccurate-in order to naturlaize as a citizen one must be a permanent resident alien(“immigrant”)
first.The path to being a resident alien is not simple nor easy and no state can do anything to affect that process.
The idea that an illegal alien student can sign an affidavit stating they intend to pursue citizenship is a meaningless as me signing one stating I intend to be a math professor at MIT.

Phil
Phil
10 years ago

Making in-state tuition available to ALL our residents makes sense. The state needs workers with college degrees. Those who wish to continue their education may not choose RI schools without the discount depriving the state of additional monies. Are you conservatives worried about a little extra competition? Want to punish the son for the sins of the father?
When did the Board of Regents get the right to do what the cowards and criminals in the General Assembly would not do you ask? Well before our current Governor was elected. As for Justin Katz chiming in here…one would think that he should be thinking long and hard about the bad choices he has made recently in his hometown that is now effecting everyone.

Russ
Russ
10 years ago

But in order for in-state tuition to be broadened (to any additional group), the state would have to pick up the shortfall between in-state tution and the actual cost to educate the student.

Having corrected this twice now, I can only wonder if you folks are deliberately misrepresenting how state funding is allocated.
More shameful is the idea that these children should be punished because you disapprove of the actions of their parents.

joe bernstein
joe bernstein
10 years ago

I notice Russ and Phil as usual have the party line rant going on this.
I guess 8USC1623 has no effect on them because they believe what they want to and the law be damned.
This really isn’t a conservative/liberal issue as I know a good number of people in the latter category who agree with me.
What laws do we observe and what laws do we ignore?
Shellfising laws?
Gun laws?
Domestic violence laws?
Making uo excuses to crap on Federal law as a feelgood exercise is foolish and loaded with the potential for bad consequences.
I don’t advocate chasing down people who came here as kids and deporting them unless they’re involved in criminal activity,but they shouldn’t get a leg up on a US citizen or legal resident from another state on tuition.
Russ-‘children”-the Dream Act allows for people up to 35-what kind of “child”is 35?

Dan
Dan
10 years ago

Only a warped progressive mind would think of denying an illegal resident a taxpayer-funded handout as a punishment. But then Rhode Island’s economic problems are a buzzing confusion to these individuals in the first place. Ask Russ or Phil why RI has such severe and chronic economic problems – you’ll get denial and avoidance respectively. They think there is all the money in the world for these pet social causes. They probably think the influx of illegals is a good thing. Ask Michael or another EMT if you want to know how much money these people cost the state.

stuckhereinri
stuckhereinri
10 years ago

Here’s another aspect to all this.
Right now, how many students who earn a degree (from ANY college/university) in RI actually end up working in RI?
It’s not like RI is this hotbed of good jobs.
So we’ll be giving ILLEGAL aliens a break on tuition so that they can graduate and then go work out of state.
Sounds like a good idea to me!

Russ
Russ
10 years ago

Monique, if I’m not mistaken you asked the wrong question. The question is, how is state funding allocated to URI (the Latino Policy Institute says it’s a fixed amount based on the number of full-time enrolled students). Unless there is proof that this rule will change the number of students, the taxpayers will pay the same.

In 2008, the state of Rhode Island provided a subsidy of $3,367 per full time enrolled student (FTE) per year for public research universities/colleges (like URI), and $5,264 per FTE per year for community colleges (CCRI). This subsidy is per full time enrolled student (FTE) regardless of in-state or out of state tuition rates, and regardless of citizenship status. State subsidy budget allocations are not directly affected by the number of non-citizen students, regardless of whether they are paying in-state or out-of-state tuition. [my emphasis]

Russ
Russ
10 years ago

Only a warped progressive mind would think of denying an illegal resident a taxpayer-funded handout [sic] as a punishment.

That’s simply not the facts. It’s just a matter of what’s best for the state (I take it some prefer to keep this segment of the population in low paying jobs and likely without healthcare — and guess else who gets punished?). Not to mention that everyone pays taxes, including resident aliens.

Dan
Dan
10 years ago

Russ – Your arguments and “corrections” make no sense. I find it comical that you’d cite the “Latino Policy Institute” of a 4th tier university as an authority on anything, but regardless, foregone revenue is exactly the same in effect as an expenditure. You still haven’t explained why RI is in such dire economic circumstances. I suppose it has nothing to do with its status as a welfare magnet.

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