UPDATE: In-State Tuition For Illegal Immigrants’ Children

By  //  March 18, 2014

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Sen. Jack Latvala
Sen. Jack Latvala

TALLAHASSEE, FLORIDA — A bill to offer in-state tuition for children of undocumented immigrants passed through the Senate Education Committee on Tuesday by a 5-4 vote.


SB 1400, sponsored by Sen. Jack Latvala, R-Clearwater, would allow DREAMers to take advantage of the same in-state tuition rates as Florida residents at colleges and universities across the state.

Four of the “NO” votes came from Republican Senators, including Sen. Lizbeth Benacquisto, R-Fort Myers, and Sen. Jeff Brandes, R-St. Petersburg.

Sen. Lizbeth Benacquisto
Sen. Lizbeth Benacquisto

“I oppose forcing law-abiding Florida families to subsidize the tuition of those whose families’ first act in the U.S. was breaking our immigration laws,” Benacquisto said in a statement. “SB 1400 creates incentives for illegal immigration and I will vote no when it comes to a vote in the Senate Education Committee this morning.”

“I think these young people, these students, deserve the opportunity to get an education at the same rate as someone who has grown up, like they have, in this state,” said Sen. David Simmons, R-Altamonte Springs.

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