Cost of Low-Skill Immigrants to the U.S. Taxpayer - Approximately $20,000 a year.


Texas Spends $4 Billion Alone On Education For Illegal Immigrants. The ADE In Arkansas  Reported Only $163 Million For Education And Imprisonment.


Lawmakers have been discussing the best way to tackle the illegal immigration at the state level.  The following excerpts are taken from a scholarly paper by the Heritage Foundation, entitled "The Fiscal Cost of Low-Skill Immigrants to the U.S. Taxpayer." I would recommend that those involved in leadership positions, or those writing about the topic, read this entire long report with charts and a great deal of data to document his calculations.   Main points are highlighted in red. 


Illegal aliens may not receive all the benefits used in the following study, but they receive most of them.  Also see an article below entitled, "Illegals cost Texas $4.7 billion - Estimate based on analysis of Census data," written in 2005.  Also see excerpts from article on 60 to 83 hospital closings in California because of emergency treatment of illegal aliens.


"Each year, families and individuals pay taxes to the government and receive back a wide variety of services and benefits. A fiscal deficit occurs when the benefits and services received by one group exceed the taxes paid. When such a deficit occurs, other groups must pay for the services and benefits of the group in deficit. Each year, govern­ment is involved in a large-scale transfer of resources between different social groups.


"On average, low-skill immigrant households re­ceived $30,160 per household in immediate govern­ment benefits and services in FY 2004, including direct benefits, means-tested benefits, education, and popula­tion-based services. By contrast, low-skill immigrant households paid only $10,573 in taxes. Thus, low-skill immigrant households received nearly three dollars in benefits and services for each dollar in taxes paid.


"The net fiscal deficit of a household equals the cost of immediate benefits and services received minus taxes paid. As Chart 5 shows, if the costs of direct and means-tested benefits, education, and population-based ser­vices were counted, the average low-skill household had a fiscal deficit of $19,588 (expenditures of $30,160 minus $10,573 in taxes).


"However, the fiscal burden becomes most severe among elderly households, where the net annual fiscal deficit soars to $32,686 per household per year. This amounts to roughly $15,000 per year for each elderly low-skill immigrant.


"It is often argued that low-skill immigrants have a positive impact on U.S. taxpayers because they pay taxes into the Social Security trust fund. Low-skill immigrant households receive many other government benefits as well, receiving ten dollars in total government benefits for each dollar they pay in Social Security taxes.


"Current immigrants (both legal and illegal) have very low education levels relative to the non-immigrant U.S. population. As Chart 1 shows, at least 50 percent, and perhaps 60 percent of illegal immigrant adults lack a high school degree… By contrast, only 9 percent of non-immigrant adults lack a high school degree. The current immigrant population, thus, contains a disproportionate share of poorly edu­cated individuals. These individuals will tend to have low wages, pay little in taxes, and receive above average levels of government benefits and services.


"There is a common misconception that the low edu­cation levels of recent immigrants is part of a permanent historical pattern, and that the U.S. has always admitted immigrants who were poorly educated relative to the native born population. Historically, this was not the case. For example, in 1960, recent immigrants were no more likely than were non-immigrants to lack a high school degree. By 1998, recent immigrants were almost four times more likely to lack a high school degree than were non-immigrants.[22]


"As the relative education level of immigrants fell in recent decades, so did their relative wage levels. In 1960, the average immigrant male in the U.S. actually earned more than the average non-immigrant man. As the relative edu­cation levels of subsequent waves of immigrants fell, so did relative wages. By 1998, the average immigrant earned 23 percent less than the average non-immigrant.[23]


"Low wage levels in low-skill immigrant households lead to high levels of poverty: Over 30 percent of persons living in low-skill immigrant households were poor in 2004 compared to the overall poverty rate of 12.7 percent in the U.S. population."


Illegals cost Texas $4.7 billion
Estimate based on analysis of Census data


Posted: April 12, 2005


Texas' illegal immigrant population is costing the state's taxpayers more than $4.7 billion per year for education, medical care and incarceration, according to an analysis of the latest Census data by the Federation for American Immigration Reform.


According to the group, even if the estimated tax contributions of illegal immigrant workers are subtracted, net outlays still amount to more than $3.7 billion per year, costing the average, native-born Texas household about $725.


The analysis looks at the costs to the state for education, health care and incarceration resulting from illegal immigration.

Texans spend more than $4 billion annually on education for illegal immigrant children and for their U.S.-born siblings. About 11.9 percent of the K-12 public school students in Texas are children of illegal aliens, according to the study.


Taxpayer-funded medical outlays for health care provided to the state's illegal alien population amount to about $520 million a year, according to FAIR.

The uncompensated cost of incarcerating illegal aliens in Texas' state and county prisons amounts to about $150 million a year (not including local jail detention costs or related law enforcement and judicial expenditures or the monetary costs of the crimes that led to their incarceration). State and local taxes paid by the unauthorized immigrant population go toward offsetting these costs, but they do not come near to matching the expenses. The total of such payments are a little less than $1 billion per year.


See the following article for the medical costs of illegal aliens, " Illegal aliens threaten
U.S. medical system."  They report that, "
Under the Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act of 1985, hospitals are obligated to treat the uninsured without reimbursement.  


"According to the report, between 1993 and 2003, 60 California hospitals closed because half their services became unpaid. Another 24 California hospitals verge on closure, the author writes."


Another article has this to say: WASHINGTON – "Health care providers can charge the government for emergency care provided to illegal aliens beginning Tuesday.  The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services issued final guidance Monday that sets up a system for reimbursement. Lawmakers set aside $1 billion over four years for the program, created by Medicare legislation passed in 2003."  (This $billion dollars come out of taxpayers' pockets, including Arkansas taxpayers.