Monday, May 12, 2008

Ballot Initiative Curbing Benefits for Illegal Aliens Approved by AG

Reasons to Work To Get Initiative Passed
(Article sent out by Arkansas Family Coalition - Posted with permssion)

The ballot initiative denying illegal aliens certain benefits has been approved on its third try by Attorney General which clears the way for Secure Arkansas (the group sponsoring the initiative) to circulate its petition. Secure Arkansas has until July 7 to get at least 61974 Arkansas registered voters' signatures in order to qualify the proposed initiative for the ballot in November.

As you can see, proponents of the initiative have a tough hill to climb in a short time. We are so grateful that it was finally approved; we weren't sure it would ever be approved. Everyone's help and money (just for necessities) will be needed to get this done in such a short time. No one with Secure Arkansas, the sponsor of the initiative, is receiving pay. It is all volunteer work. Arkansas Family Coalition will do all they can to help with this initiative. The title of the initiative petition is An Act To Prevent Persons Unlawfully Present in the United States From Receiving Certain Public Benefits

Following are some reasons we should fight hard to get this initiative passed. It doesn't give us everything we want, but is a good beginning.

1. It will prevent illegal aliens from receiving certain public benefits. Some benefits like emergency treatment are required by federal law so the initiative can't prevent those.

2. Passing this initiative will help alleviate the problem with Arkansas being a magnet for illegal aliens.

In Arkansas, there was a 437 percent increase of Hispanics from 1990 to 2003, the first or second in the nation. Some surrounding states (Oklahoma, Tennessee, Missouri, and Arizona) have passed tough immigration bills that are causing many aliens to leave their state and head for Arkansas. Tens of thousands of Hispanics have left the Tulsa area because of a tough law passed there. It is reported that "Most illegal immigrants are ending up in either Kansas or Arkansas." See this link for article detailing what the above four states have done. http://www.wpaag.org/Immigration%20-%20Illegals%20fleeing%20states%20enacting%20laws-Beebe%20should%20act.htm

It is interesting how often we have heard the statement that there is no way to deport all these illegal immigrants. It is obvious now, as many have maintained - they won't have to be deported if our officials will just make and enforce the right laws. They will leave on their own accord!

3. Legislators will be far more apt to pass other laws as other states have if this initiative passes with good support. Many legislators want to pass tough immigration laws and tried to do so in the last legislative session; but their efforts have been resisted by the same groups that are fighting this initiative, including the ACLU. Many other legislators will come on board if they see this initiative passed.

4. This initiative will require agencies to keep records on costs of benefits to illegal aliens. Legislators held committee meetings a few months to determine these costs and found that most agencies have not even tried to determine if benefits are going to illegal aliens or not.

5. This initiative requires state and local governments in Arkansas to verify citizenship or legal residency of most people applying for public benefits. "One state agency that would have to change its procedures if the proposal passes is the Arkansas Department of Health. The department doesn’t require any identification or proof of legal residency for receipt of services." Taken from Arkansas Democrat Gazette article http://www.nwanews.com/adg/News/225065

6. A business license will be denied to anyone who is not a lawful citizen of the United States.

7. The initiative requires a person registering a vehicle to present a valid Arkansas driver’s license or state identification card.

8. An individual who is not lawfully present in the US shall not be eligible on the basis of residence within the state for any postsecondary education benefit, including without limitation scholarships or financial aid; and resident tuition.

In 2005 Representative Joyce Elliott fought hard for a bill to provide instate tuition and scholarships for illegal aliens, which would have given illegal aliens advantages over our own citizens. Her bill (which the AG ruled could be illegal) was barely defeated by those who fought back just as hard. The bill was introduced again in the 2007 legislative session and failed again. This initiative would keep that bill from coming up again.

You can pull the petition off at this link: http://debbie-pelley.c.topica.com/maalqSYabG7unaBV5JKcaeQCRr/ You must read the rules before getting petitions signed at this link: http://debbie-pelley.c.topica.com/maalqSYabG7uoaBV5JKcaeQCRr/This last link also gives the address for where to send the signed and notarized petitions. Most banks will have notary publics to notarize your signatures free of charge.

Send contributions to Secure Arkansas, P.O. Box 21096, Little Rock, AR 72221 Your help is greatly needed! Volunteers to work as precinct captains and county directors are also needed; and people are needed to work the day of the primary, May 20 to gather signatures. If you can help, please call us at 870-932-5065 or email us at blhester@m34u.net or call Secure Arkansas 501 - 765-3325.

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