New York State lawmakers passed a $2.1 billion fund Tuesday that could potentially shell out thousands of dollars to illegal immigrants.
While the entire proposal has yet to be fleshed out, one version would allow illegal immigrants who earned less than $26,000 to collect $15,600, according to The New York Times.
Republican New York State Assemblyman Kieran Michael Lalor criticized the move.
“This is a disgrace and tells you all you need to know about the Democrats who control New York,” Lalor said in a statement to the Daily Caller. “To Cuomo and the Democrats, those in the country illegally are the priority, not the law-abiding New Yorkers who foot the bill.”
With one party Dem rule dominated by the ascendant socialist wing, the average illegal immigrant will get exponentially more out of this budget than the average New Yorker. Illegals will get as much as $20k in direct payments.
— Kieran Michael Lalor (@KieranLalor) April 6, 2021
The fund will provide financial assistance to workers who were ineligible to receive unemployment benefits during the pandemic, which includes illegal immigrants.
“Applicants shall not be required to prove that they are lawfully present in the United States,” the bill states.
Undocumented workers were ineligible for stimulus checks and federal unemployment benefits that were given to eligible citizens during the pandemic. Studies show, however, illegal immigrants pay billions each year in taxes. (RELATED: Biden Relief Package Includes Money For New York’s Seaway International Bridge, A Priority For Chuck Schumer)
John Liu, a Democratic State senator from Queens, defended the fund’s provisions for illegal immigrants. Excluded workers may not have a piece of paper, but they’re New Yorkers just as much,” he said, according to The Journal News.
Applicants are required to provide the commissioner of labor proof of work-related eligibility by showing identification. Applicants can show a birth certificate from a foreign country or foreign identification. Applicants must also prove they were residents of the state, ineligible for unemployment benefits and lost income due to the pandemic.
For those who can at least prove their residency, identity and work identification, they could be eligible for a smaller sum of up to $3,200.00.
The Fiscal Policy Institute estimated approximately 290,000 workers will receive some level of benefits from the fund, though it is unclear how many of those workers would be illegal immigrants.
Prior to receiving partial relief through President Joe Biden’s coronavirus relief package, the state was facing a near $15 billion budget deficit, which Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo was going to close by hiking taxes, according to the New York Post.