Hawley opposes proposed fund for $2.1 billion to aid illegal immigrants

Posted 2 April 2021 at 8:04 am

Press Release, Assemblyman Steve Hawley

Assemblyman Steve Hawley (R,C,I-Batavia) is vocalizing his opposition to the proposed establishment of an “excluded workers fund” in this year’s state budget, which advocates hope will provide over $2.1 billion in new state funding to provide aid to illegal immigrants.

The fund would allocate $2.1 billion in new spending to provide unemployment benefits, including benefits similar to Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) and Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC), for workers federally ineligible to receive traditional unemployment insurance benefits: illegal immigrants and convicted felons.

Non-citizens and other cash-economy workers would be the primary beneficiaries of such funds, as they are ineligible to receive unemployment benefits under current federal Department of Labor regulations. Some beneficiaries would be eligible for payments of up to $27,000 under current Assembly Majority proposals.

“In this unprecedented time of need, as thousands of families struggle to keep the lights on and put food on their tables, we shouldn’t be spending billions to help people who should not be here in the first place,” said Hawley. “Rewarding those who ignore our laws will only further erode the rule of law in our state. In doing so, we would disrespect all who come to our nation legally, as well as those who otherwise live here lawfully but are still struggling to make ends meet.”