Virginia: Undocumented Immigrants Pay Taxes, Too


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All too often, anti-immigration advocates assert that undocumented families impose huge costs on state budgets without contributing anything to state coffers in return. But a new report from the Virginia-based Commonwealth Institute for Fiscal Analysis finds otherwise. The report, Tax Contributions of Virginia's Undocumented Immigrants, points out that many state and local taxes-- including the sales and excise that fall hardest on low- and middle-income families-- are paid by everyone, legal or not, and estimates that undocumented families in Virginia likely paid as much as $400 million in these taxes in 2006. The widespread attention given the report by Virginia-based media should help to inform immigration policy debates, as similar reports already have done in in Colorado, Iowa, Georgia, New Mexico, and Oregon.

The Commonwealth Institute for Fiscal Analysis has released a report detailing the impact that Virginia's undocumented workers have on the state's budget. The report called Fiscal Facts: Tax Contributions of Virginia's Undocumented Immigrants finds that the state's undocumented population pay between $145 and $174 million in state income, sales, and property taxes. It has recieved wide attention in the media and will help to inform the debate regarding the many contributions made by undocumented Virginians. Similar state specific reports have been issued in Colorado, Iowa, Georgia, New Mexico, and Oregon.

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