New research: Dream Act would have $247 Million economic impact for Nebraska

Nebraska Dreamers and business leaders went to D.C. in December 2017 to urge our members of Congress to support a clean Dream Act.

A new study released in December confirms passing the Dream Act of 2017 would be an enormous economic stimulus across Nebraska.

According to new data compiled jointly by the University of Southern California’s Center for the Study of Immigrant Integration and the Center for American Progress, Nebraska would see an economic boost of more than $247 million. This is the latest of numerous studies that confirm the tax and economic contributions of Dreamers and their families to local communities.

Click here to see an interactive map of economic impact

According to the study, each of Nebraska’s three congressional districts would see Gross Domestic Product (GDP) grow by tens of millions of dollars as more young Nebraskans can grow their careers and contribute to local economies without the fear of arrest or deportation.

  • District 1 – $63.8 million
  • District 2 – $123.7 million
  • District 3 – $59.8 million

Total – $247.3 million

“This report clearly indicates that the Dream Act of 2017 provides for a humane and just course of action for Dreamer youth by allowing them to remain in the country in which they have been educated and employed so that they can continue to make a positive contribution to the economy of our state,” said Jim Partington, executive director of the Nebraska Restaurant Association. “I have had the opportunity to hear from local leaders across Nebraska who recognize the value of Dreamers’ skills and contributions to local communities.”

Currently, young Nebraskans who were covered by the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program face great uncertainty with DACA set to expire in March 2018. The Dream Act of 2017 is a bipartisan bill that would protect DACA recipients, and those similarly situated, from deportation and allow them to become lawful residents while eventually earning U.S. citizenship.

“Protecting these talented, hard-working young Nebraskans from being separated from their families and home communities has always been the humane choice, and this data proves everyone has much to gain if Congress passes the Dream Act,” said Darcy Tromanhauser, Nebraska Appleseed Immigrants & Communities Program Director. “Our local businesses and economies thrive when every industrious young Nebraskan can grow their careers, support community businesses, and fully contribute to the towns they call home.”

Young Nebraskans who would be covered by the Dream Act work all manner of jobs from education and the financial sector, to health care and service industries.


About the DREAM Act of 2017

To be eligible under the DREAM Act, individuals must have been under age 18 when they were brought to the U.S. and must have lived continuously in the U.S. for at least four years.

The bill would allow first for Conditional Permanent Resident (CPR) status for those who meet the requirements of being enrolled in school or having earned a high school diploma (or equivalent), having good moral character, and passing a medical examination.

From that point, those with CPR status would be eligible to apply for Legal Permanent Resident (LPR) status and eventually U.S. citizenship after meeting additional requirements around educational attainment, military service, or employment.

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