REFERENCE TITLE: comprehensive immigration reform
State of Arizona
First Regular Session
A CONCURRENT MEMORIAL
urging congress to enact comprehensive immigration reforms that encourage legal immigration, deter unauthorized immigration, promote economic growth and ensure secure borders.
(TEXT OF BILL BEGINS ON NEXT PAGE)
To the Congress of the United States of America:
Your memorialist respectfully represents:
Whereas, the United States government has an obligation to its citizens to secure its borders and ensure the rule of law in its communities; and
Whereas, the United States government must strengthen international border security efforts by dedicating adequate and significant resources for technology, personnel and training for border region enforcement; and
Whereas, federal immigration policies must adhere to the United States tradition as a nation of immigrants and reaffirm this nation's commitment to family unity, economic opportunity and humane treatment; and
Whereas, immigrants have contributed significantly to the strength and economic prosperity of the United States, and action must be taken to ensure their fair treatment by employers and protection against fraud and abuse; and
Whereas, current immigration laws and the enforcement of such laws are ineffective and do not serve the people of the United States, the national security interests of the United States or the economic prosperity of the United States; and
Whereas, the United States cannot effectively carry out its national security policies unless it identifies unauthorized persons and encourages them to come forward and participate legally in the economy of the United States; and
Whereas, illegal immigration fosters other illegal activity, including human smuggling, trafficking and document fraud, all of which undermine the national security interests of the United States; and
Whereas, illegal immigration burdens states and local communities with hundreds of millions of dollars in uncompensated expenses for law enforcement, health care and other essential services; and
Whereas, illegal immigration creates an underclass of workers who are vulnerable to fraud and exploitation; and
Whereas, fixing the broken immigration system requires a comprehensive approach that provides for adequate legal channels for immigration and strong enforcement of immigration laws that will serve the economic, social and security interests of the United States; and
Whereas, foreign governments, particularly those that share an international border with the United States, must play a critical role in securing international borders and deterring the illegal entry of foreign nationals into the United States; and
Whereas, federal immigration policy should foster economic growth by allowing willing workers to be matched with willing employers if no United States worker is available to take a job; and
Whereas, immigration reform is a key component to achieving effective enforcement and will allow for the best use of security and enforcement resources to be focused on the greatest risks; and
Whereas, the Arizona Legislature supports comprehensive immigration reforms and strong enforcement of immigration laws that will encourage authorized immigration, deter unauthorized immigration, promote economic growth and ensure secure borders.
Wherefore your memorialist, the Senate of the State of Arizona, the House of Representatives concurring, prays:
1. That the Congress of the United States adopt sensible and comprehensive immigration reforms that include the following:
(a) Establishment of programs to secure the international borders of the United States of America, including programs for effective enforcement.
(b) Increase state criminal alien assistance program funding to states such as Arizona to cover costs of law enforcement associated with unauthorized immigration.
(c) Establishment of state impact grants to help offset the costs of healthcare and education.
(d) Establishment of market-based visa programs for essential workers.
(e) Promotion of historic circular migration patterns that allow workers to enter the United States to work and then return to their families in their home countries when their work is done.
(f) Encouragement of family unity and reduction of the backlog of immigration applications.
(g) Settlement of the status of unauthorized persons after being subject to sanctions such as paying an appropriate fine, paying an application fee, establishing that the person has been employed or in school during the qualifying period and undergoing a medical examination.
(h) Establishment of a right to qualified representation, at no expense to the government, at immigration proceedings.
(i) Reimbursement of emergency health services furnished to unauthorized persons.
2. That the Congress of the United States immediately begin effective enforcement of these reforms at the federal level so that Arizona is not forced to shoulder the costs of enforcing federal immigration laws.
3. That the Secretary of State of the State of Arizona transmit a copy of this Memorial to the President of the United States, the President of the United States Senate, the Speaker of the United States House of Representatives and each Member of Congress from the State of Arizona.