ATLANTA, GA – This week, the Georgia House of Representatives failed to move the Georgia Resident In-State Tuition Act (HB-120) out of the House Rules Committee before the crossover deadline. This bill would have fixed the current system that prevents an estimated 21,000 Dreamers from accessing lower tuition rates even though they work in vital industries, support our COVID-19 response efforts, and are tax paying members of society. Below is a statement from Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program recipient and FWD.us Georgia Immigration Manager Jaime Rangel on this inaction:
“I am disheartened by the Georgia House of Representatives’ failure to take action on a bill that would strengthen Georgia’s workforce and economy while supporting young immigrants who want to earn a higher education in the state they call home. Despite the immense benefits of the DACA program, DACA recipients and other young immigrants in Georgia continue to face higher education obstacles, often forcing them to take their talents and skills elsewhere. Without a fix, our current failed system will only weaken our immigrant community while driving away talent that could help us build a stronger, more diverse workforce. I encourage Georgia lawmakers to continue discussing this important measure for a better tomorrow.”
The Georgia Resident In-State Tuition Act will allow Georgia’s DACA recipients to qualify for a tuition rate that would be no higher than 110% of in-state tuition at certain state colleges and universities. Those who have established and maintained domicile in Georgia since January 1, 2013 or are the dependent of a parent who has established or maintained domicile in Georgia since January 1, 2013, and who have graduated from a Georgia high school or have a GED, among other requirements would apply. Co-sponsors of the bill include State Representatives Dale Washburn (R-Macon), Matthew Gambill (R-Cartersville), Zulma Lopez (D-Atlanta), Bee Nguyen (D-Atlanta), and Wes Cantrell (R -Woodstock).