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Latvala files immigrant tuition bill; says he counts 25 votes in the Senate


The dream is fading, she says. She's a high school senior with an honor-roll transcript and a mouth full of braces. Pink.

She wants to go to college. Celeste Pioquinto, 17, was born and raised in Clearwater, educated in Clearwater except when she went to Seminole Middle for its gifted program. She'll graduate from Clearwater High this spring.

But her parents are not from Clearwater and moreover not from this country. Mexico.

She can't get in-state tuition to Florida colleges and universities. Her parents don't make a ton of money. She is the eldest of four children.

The dream is fading.

Few issues before the Florida Legislature this session are likely to garner more debate as an effort to extend in-state tuition rates to the children of undocumented immigrants. The bill introduced Wednesday by state Sen. Jack Latvala, R-Clearwater, hits at the intersection of emotion and politics, where a desire to educate Florida's growing immigrant population meets a fear of rewarding illegal entry into the country.

"These children are the children of taxpayers in Florida, who pay our sales tax, who pay our gas tax," Latvala said at a news conference Wednesday at St. Petersburg College's Clearwater campus. "I just think this is a disparity, a discriminatory issue that needs to go away."

State Rep. Ed Hooper, R-Clearwater, voiced his support alongside Latvala on Wednesday, though the bill's House counterpart is coming from Rep. Jeanette Nuñez, R-Miami. Rep. Will Weatherford of Pasco County has put his weight as House speaker behind the bill, as well.

Read more here.


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It is the responsibility of every nation to provide for the health, education and criminal costs incurred by their citizens while their citizens are in a foreign country. Because of the diversity of means by which the needs of citizens are provided for through out the world, often ranging from high taxation for many benefits to no taxation for no benefits, and because a country's citizen's first and primary recourse for the proper and customary administration of defined rights, responsibilities and entitlements is to his own country's policies and resources, whenever a citizen is "abroad" the host nation shall have the ability to charge a visiting citizen's home country for expenses which the host nation has incurred to its own citizens due to the needs of the visiting citizen. Enforcement of these payments can be enacted through the issuance or denial of visas --if a country does not pay its bill for its citizens, then no visas are issued to any of that country's citizens and existing visas are revoked. (Costs may also be reimbursed by "sponsoring" groups, insurance companies, or individuals.) A law/policy on this matter should also state that a child born to a foreign national while in the United States is granted dual citizenship, but that the responsibility for the "entitlement" costs of the child remain with the home country of the parents until the child turns 18 or becomes a citizen of one nation alone, which ever comes later. Nothing in this policy should ever prevent charitable organizations from providing care or services to whom ever they choose.

The a priori principle behind this thought is that every nation has the right to "raise up" citizens as it sees fit. But along with that right comes not only the glory of all the good her citizens create, but also the responsibility to provide for her citizen's needs and reimburse others for the costs and liabilities of her citizens. There are no rights without corresponding responsibilities.9


How are illegal aliens paying payroll taxes Senator Latvala?

So sorry, but turning a blind eye to the illegal nature of them being in Florida in the first place shouldn't be rewarded with reduced tuition that is subsidized with my tax dollars.

Read more here: http://miamiherald.typepad.com/nakedpolitics/2014/02/latvala-files-immigrant-tuition-bill-says-he-counts-25-votes-in-the-senate.html#storylink=cpy

While these children may be "stuck", it is their parent's fault - why have they not - IN 17 YEARS - applied for citizenship?

Why should this child get in-state tuition when their legal residence is Mexico, yet someone from Georgia, California, or Ohio that are real US citizens will have to pay higher tuition? By-the-way, they will also pay sales tax, gas tax, etc. while they are going to college in this state.

Again, so sorry, but turning a blind eye to the illegal nature of them being in Florida in the first place SHOULDN'T BE REWARDED WITH REDUCED TUITION THAT IS SUBSIDIZED WITH MY TAX DOLLARS.

Bill Thompson

The RPOF sure is acting very strangely in this election year. Yesterday, Scott supports gay rights. The GOP controlled legislature is moving forward legislation to give in state tuition breaks to illegal aliens, expanding casino gambling, approving medical marijuana.

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