Statistics estimate that at least 4.1 million illegal immigrants, including their U.S.-born children, live in the state of California, with approximately 25 percent of them residing in Los Angeles County.
According to a study by the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR), illegal immigrants cost the entire state of California a total of $25.3 billion in 2013, but they only paid an estimated $3.5 billion back to the state in taxes.
In Los Angeles County alone, the total amount spent on welfare during two years for illegal immigrant families is almost one-fourth the amount spent in benefits for all welfare recipients in the entire Los Angeles County. Illegal aliens alone are not eligible to receive welfare benefits, but those with children born in the United States may apply for welfare assistance and food stamps.
A recent exclusive report by Fox News, based on actual data obtained from the county Department of Public Social Services, revealed that the “sanctuary county” of Los Angeles doled out nearly $1.3 billion in welfare money to illegal immigrant families in just 2015 and 2016 alone.
Welfare benefits in Los Angeles County were paid out as follows:
- $602 million paid in 2015 to over 58,000 illegal alien families
- $675 million paid in 2016 to over 64,000 illegal alien families
- $181 million paid during the first five months of 2017 to more than 60,000 families
Payments to all welfare recipients (legal and illegal families combined) were paid as follows:
- $3.1 billion – 2015
- $2.9 billion – 2016
- $1.5 billion – 2017 (first five months)
However, welfare benefits are just the “tip of the iceberg,” according to Robert Rector of the Heritage Foundation, who noted that the government spends an average of $24,000 annually per family when the costs for education, police and fire protection, medical services and housing assistance are all factored.
“They get $3 in benefits for every $1 they spend,” Rector stated, according to the Fox News report.
Rector also stated that several thousand fewer families are receiving welfare this year, compared to last year, as President Trump’s crackdown on illegal immigration has resulted in fewer families applying.
Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, who took office in 2013, is a strong supporter of keeping Los Angeles a sanctuary city and making sure all immigrants know how to apply for government benefits, claiming they “contribute” to the city’s economy.
Garcetti founded the “Office of Immigrant Affairs” in 2013, to promote “immigration reforms,” including helping immigrants to enter the workforce and “establish a path to legal status for the undocumented currently in the U.S.”
The Office of Immigrant Affairs’ website quoted a report in February which claimed that in 2014, foreign-born residents contributed $232.9 billion to L.A. County’s GDP.
“L.A. became one of the world’s great cities by embracing immigration and diversity, and we’ll continue supporting anyone who wants to work hard and invest in our future—no matter who they are, where they come from, or what language they speak,” Mayor Garcetti stated.
However, another report in June, based on actual figures released by Los Angeles County, revealed that Latino homelessness has skyrocketed by 63 percent over the past year, adding another 7,000 people to the streets.
Overall, the homeless population in Los Angeles has increased by 23 percent, and county supervisor Hilda Solis admits, “it’s a whole new phenomenon.”
The L.A. Times reported that Latinos made up 27 percent of the county’s homeless population in 2016, and that figure has jumped to 35 percent within the past year.
Last week, President Trump introduced a newly proposed merit-based immigration plan, called the “RAISE Act,” which would establish a skills-based point system for immigrant applicants, and eliminate the outdated visa lottery system. With this bill, he explained, the days will be over when immigrants can come into the United States and just start collecting welfare for five years.
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