Nearly 5,000 denied in-state tuition, aid under new state law
Arizona Daily Star
Aug. 2, 2007

Tucson, Arizona | Published:

PHOENIX - Nearly 5,000 people have been denied in-state college tuition, financial aid and adult education classes this year under a new Arizona law banning undocumented immigrants from receiving those state-funded services, a new study shows.

The Joint Legislative Budget Committee's report said that since Proposition 300 took effect on Jan. 1, 1,500 students from Arizona State University and the University of Arizona were denied financial aid or in-state financial status because they couldn't prove their legal status and an additional 1,790 community-college students statewide were blocked.

Out of 13,700 applications for government-assisted child care, the state rejected 86 because the individuals couldn't prove citizenship, according to the report.

It also said that 1,403 out of 11,931 applicants for state adult education were rejected and of 220 individuals who applied for the Family Literacy Program, 30 were deemed ineligible.

Proposition 300 was one of four immigration-related ballot measures approved at the polls last November by Arizona voters.

The measure requires undocumented immigrants to pay the out-of-state tuition rate at the state's public universities and colleges, prohibits students from receiving any type of financial assistance that is funded with state money, and requires schools to determine and report to the state Legislature twice a year how many undocumented immigrants are attending their schools.

The measure's impact has not been nearly as widespread as opponents expected, but supporters say it's reducing the amount the state spends on illegal immigrants.

"It's definitely working," said state Treasurer Dean Martin, a Republican and former state senator who championed the ballot initiative.

Some students are applying for private scholarships that don't require Social Security numbers, proof of legal residency or citizenship while some are trying to raise money from local residents to help cover tuition costs. Others are cutting class loads and taking more time to earn degrees.