USCIS spokesman Daniel Cosgrove told TheDC the new manual will be out by the end of fiscal year 2013.
When asked if the revamping had anything to do with the president’s push for immigration reform, Cosgrove said that the effort was “an ongoing project” for the department.
As TheDC previously reported, some have concerns about the manner in which the government is promoting government benefits, including in the welcome materials, to new immigrants.
In November, Alabama Republican Sen. Jeff Sessions advocated taking the “Government Benefits” page down. (RELATED: Homeland Security promoting government benefits to immigrants)
“Some of these programs are clearly not available for immigrants,” Sessions told TheDC in November, “and it just creates confusion out there and suggests that if you can get into America, you can leave and get onto these programs, and from what we are seeing, many of these people are successful in getting on benefit programs that they are not lawfully entitled to.”
DHS launched WelcometoUSA.gov in 2007, and the guidebook was first developed in 2004 and revised in 2007.
Update: After publication Sessions weighed in on the department’s expected addition of the Affordable Care Act to WelcometoUSA.gov.
“The administration’s determination to place immigrants on federal assistance, including the President’s health law, will add trillions to the cost of any amnesty,” the Alabama senator told TheDC. “It is wrong and unfair to ask Americans to pay higher taxes and bear more debt in order to provide free benefits to legal and illegal immigrants. Such a policy weakens growth and undermines the core legal and economic principle of immigration – that you should be able to establish before you come here that you are financially self-sufficient.”