Tag Archives: economy

Gallego Wants An Update to Immigration Impact Study

Congressman Pete Gallego (D) Alpine sent a letter to State Comptroller Susan Combs requesting an update to a study that her predecessor did in 2006. In it, Comptroller Carole Keeton Strayhorn that the removal of undocumented immigrants would cost Texas almost $18 billion in gross state product.

Gallego informs Combs:

A more recent study from the Immigration Policy Center noted, “[i]f all unauthorized immigrants were removed from Texas, the state would lose $69.3 billion in economic activity, $30.8 billion in gross state product, and approximately 403,174 jobs, even accounting for adequate market adjustment time.”

So, it would seem that an update is in order.

As public servants, the weight of our words is heavier. The passage or failure of immigration reform will profoundly affect Texas. An updated study from the Texas Comptroller’s office would shed light on the true impact to our state by unauthorized immigrants. Your findings and conclusions could also prove invaluable during deliberation on the various proposals being considered by Congress. It would be unfortunate for groundless statements presented as facts to go unchallenged.

Get to it, Comptroller!


Previous Post:  And don’t forget to read about the latest poll on Latino feelings toward Republican immigration proposals.

Yet Another Report Says Immigrants Are Good

Julian Aguilar at the Trib reports on the latest report (not from the Heritage Foundation, obviously) which states that immigrants are good for the economy, especially in Texas.

Immigrants make up more than 20 percent of the Texas workforce, and the state’s number of naturalized citizens increased by more than 68,000 in 2011 when compared with 2010, according to a compilation of immigration data by the Immigration Policy Center. The purchasing power of Hispanics and Asians in Texas — whether native born or immigrants — increased to $265 billion in 2012, an increase of $55 billion from 2010.

The report also states that some sort of mass deporation program would cost the state billions of dollars. Has anyone told this to President Obama?

“If all unauthorized immigrants were removed from Texas, the state would lose $69.3 billion in economic activity, $30.8 billion in gross state product, and approximately 403,174 jobs, even accounting for adequate market adjustment time,” the study says, citing analysis from the Texas-based Perryman Group.

Of course, Aguilar cites the right-wing, anti-immigrant group FAIR, but they are run by a white supremacist by the name of Tanton. It’s the same type of data that is created by the Heritage Foundation. Honestly, I think Aguilar gave them too much virtual ink considering their fear-laden statements.


The 68,000-person increase in the Texas’ naturalized citizen population means that demographic represents about 33 percent of the state’s immigrants. Naturalized citizens are also becoming more educated, with about 29 percent of the group earning at least a bachelor’s degree by 2011, compared with 15 percent of noncitizens.

This isn’t news. The article event cites the 2006 study completed by the State Comptroller’s office which found that immigrants pumped $18 billion into the economy, and pumped in more revenue into the state of Texas’ coffers than they took out. Aguilar cites the cost to local governments, but what about the net productivity and profit by companies utilizing this labor force?

There’s no doubt bringing people out of the shadows will impact coffers and local economies significantly. If Republicans and their “group-think” tanks cannot come up with better reasons against immigration reform, they should just say they hate immigrants and be done with it. Frankly, the negativity produced by them will not help them in the short- or long-run.



It’s Time for Texas to Support Medicaid Expansion

Texas Republican leaders have been quite vocal in opposing any expansion of Medicaid. Much talk from Republicans as a means of attempting to soften on Latinos has centered on immigration, but health care is as much a Latino issue as immigration reform; if anything, it is quite vital to the community.

According to the Texas Medical Association, there are 6.3 million uninsured Texans, including 1.2 million children. Of those, groups with a high likelihood of being uninsured are:  Poverty-stricken families; Hispanics; and young adults. And almost 40% of Hispanics live uninsured. And non-citizens have an even higher likelihood of being uninsured; in fact, 30% of the uninsured in Texas are non-citizens.

When one looks at cities around the state, the numbers become quite real:  Houston – 30%; Laredo – 36%; Dallas – 33%; McAllen – 32%; El Paso – 28%, the list goes on. Just 35 counties of the 254 in Texas account for 80% of the uninsured.

So, why are Texas Republicans against the uninsured? Expanding Medicaid will help over a million uninsured Texans. Billions of Federal dollars will be returned to Texas within a few years, and billions more in a ten-year period. Federal dollars means jobs–for doctors, nurses, other medical staff, and businesses who work in the field.

Republican Governors in New Mexico, Nevada, North Dakota, Ohio, and Michigan now support expanding Medicaid. They have recognized the crisis, as well as the benefits of receiving Federal dollars that their taxpayers have invested. Public opinion and the opinion of Texas businesses are on the side of Medicaid expansion. It’s just the right thing to do to ensure more Texans have access to medical care, rather than only emergency room care that ends up being more costly and a less efficient use of resources.

One way or another, the taxpayers will foot the bill while Texas plays catch-up at becoming a healthier state. But when a responsible approach is available through Medicaid, then Texas should do the responsible thing.

My friends at Progress Texas are currently promoting an online petition in support of the Medicaid expansion. I’m asking you to sign the petition and support Texas doing the right thing.

DosCentavos will be doing more writing on health care and elder care in Texas. When it comes to health care, Texas is in crisis mode and Texans must come together, put politics aside, and do what is right. And when it comes to Elder Care, there’s no doubt that the lives of many of our viejitos and viejitas are at stake with decisions being made in Austin and Washington, D.C.

Sign the petition. Please.

Texans may also participate in Texas Medicaid Matters! Advocacy Day at the State Capitol on March 5, 2013. (Thanks to our friends at Texas Well and Healthy).

We are mobilizing to:

1)     Protect Medicaid for children and other vulnerable Texans.

2)     Extend Medicaid to low-income adults who qualify for it under the Affordable Care Act.

Get a schedule of events in PDF format here. DosCentavos will be blogging more about this advocacy day, too.