The Washington Post provides a quick roundup of the financial impact.
The Senate's embattled immigration bill would raise government spending by as much as $126 billion over the next decade, as the government begins paying out federal benefits to millions of new legal workers and cracks down on the border, a new Congressional Budget Office analysis concludes.The cost of the enforcement measures are easily dwarfed by the cost associated with the extra federal benefits that would be provided as a result of the legislation.
Law enforcement measures alone would necessitate the hiring of nearly 31,000 federal workers in the next five years, while the building and maintenance of 870 miles of fencing and vehicle barriers would cost $3.3 billion. Newly legalized immigrants would claim nearly $50 billion in federal benefits such as the earned income and child tax credits, Medicaid, and Social Security.
Interestingly, I did not see the numbers in this report outlying the costs associated with the hiring of any bureaucracy needed to register, monitor, and assimilate 12 million illegal immigrants into the general population. Assuredly, this could not be accomplished with the pieces currently in place, even with the addition of 1000 border patrol agents. Come to think of it, I have not seen ANY analysis of what would be required in this area. This should be a tremendous red flag about the quality of the bill, as it is central to the plan having any type of success at all. Without a realistic hard look at these details, it is hard to believe that the authors of the bill are operating in good faith, or are serious about implementing ALL of the provisions of the bill.
The Washington Times has the other half of the story:
The Senate's immigration bill will cut annual illegal immigration by just 25 percent, and the bill's new guest-worker program could lead to at least 500,000 more illegal aliens within a decade, Congress' accounting arm said yesterday.If these estimates are correct, the bill is nowhere near as "comprehensive" as we were led to believe. I would certainly welcome a war over the definition of "comprehensive" over the definition of "amnesty" as I feel it is far more helpful for the direction of the overall debate.
The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) said in its official cost estimate that many guest workers will overstay their time in the plan, with the number totaling a half-million in 2017 and reaching 1 million a decade later.
"We anticipate that many of those would remain in the United States illegally after their visas expire," CBO said of the guest-worker program.
In a blow to President Bush's timetable, the CBO said the security "triggers" that must be met before the guest-worker program can begin won't be met until 2010. Mr. Bush had hoped to have those triggers -- setting up a verification system, deploying 20,000 U.S. Border Patrol agents and constructing hundreds of miles of fencing and vehicle barriers -- completed about the time he leaves office in January 2009.
Of further note in the article is the following:
Sen. Jon Kyl of Arizona, the top Republican in the negotiations for the grand bargain, yesterday laid out the "killer" amendments he said will break the grand bargain and cause him to have to oppose the bill: creating a separate employer-sponsored system of up to 300,000 new green cards; giving temporary workers a path to citizenship; and changing the dates or definitions to allow broader family migration.
Mr. Kyl said if any of those passed, "I certainly would not support the legislation, I would do everything I can to get it defeated."
The calvary could certainly use someone on that lead charger, Jon. I understand your earnestness in trying to solve the problem. This bill, however, in not anything approaching what you or any of its sincere reporters were led to believe. And you just don't have to take the activist's word for it anymore.
UPDATE-- That's embarrassing!! Indeed, there is an outlay made for additional federal bureaucracy:
To accommodate the sharp increase in applications for immigration services and documentation that would result from S. 2611, DHS would need to expand its document-production facilities, enhance its computer systems, and hire new employees to process applications. S. 2611 would authorize the appropriation of such sums as necessary for those actions. Based on information from DHS, CBO estimates that the department would require funding of about $800 million in fiscal year 2007 for one-time costs relating to facilities and computer systems. For this estimate, we assume that the costs of new personnel would be covered by fees collected for the new applications.
So 800 million for computers, then everything else would be paid by fees. I hope that someone didn't have other plans for those fees and penalties. It still seems a bit evasive to me. The "authorize the appropriation of such sums as necessary for those actions," without any idea what those costs will be, scares me, quite frankly.