Whether we are born here or moved here, we all value that Virginia is a great place to raise a family. Immigrants move to Virginia for many of the same reasons as people born in other areas of the United States — job opportunities, good schools, and thriving communities. And Virginia’s immigrants are critical contributors to the state’s economy and communities, adding new energy and ideas everywhere from struggling mill towns seeking a second wind to the worker-hungry tech corridors. Immigrants in Virginia today are typically well educated, long-time residents of the United States, with many becoming U.S. citizens and raising children of their own.
Expanding access to driver’s licenses to all New Jersey residents, regardless of immigration status, would make the state’s roads safer and its economy stronger. The proposal would also pay for itself by bringing in tens of millions of dollars in recurring revenue for the state’s general fund, according to an NJPP analysis of new data from the New Jersey Office of Revenue and Economic Analysis. This is a win-win for drivers, working families, and the state’s finances.
On any given day and in every corner of the state, immigrants – both documented and undocumented – wake up and set out to work at small, local businesses that they themselves own and operate. This follows a nationwide trend, as immigrants are almost twice as likely to start new businesses than their native-born peers. And while immigrants are more likely to open any kind of business — including large corporations like Tesla, Google, and Pfizer — they are much more likely to own a “Main Street” business than native-born residents. These small businesses, like grocery stores, hair salons and restaurants, generate approximately $1 billion in economic activity every year and are critical to downtowns and local economies across New Jersey with its 565 unique municipalities.
The Fiscal Policy Institute details the resources community-based groups will require to maximize participation in the 2020 Census among “hard to count” residents across New York State. FPI proposes that the governor and legislature include $40 million in next year’s state budget for community-based organizations to do outreach around the 2020 Census. FPI notes that this should be in addition to whatever funds the state commits to its own outreach and media campaigns and funding to local governments. The study was first unveiled at a press conference Monday with the New York Counts 2020 Coalition.
The report notes that community-based organizations must play a big role in maximizing the participation of New Yorkers in the 2020 Census. This is the first year in which the Census Bureau asks residents to fill out Census forms online, raising issues about broadband access as well as comfort level with computers. There may be a controversial question added about the citizenship status of immigrants. And, a number of people are feeling hesitant about giving private information to the federal government.