Democratic California Gov. Gavin Newsom said he is actively considering a proposal to establish a relief fund for illegal aliens who are not covered by the stimulus package passed by Congress.
Such a fund, proposed by the California Latino Legislative Caucus, would provide cash payments to those living unlawfully in the state until they are able to return to work or the state emergency proclamation has ended.
“Californians care deeply about undocumented residents in this state,” Newsom said.
The governor added that this proposal is just one facet of a larger package he anticipates to roll out in May.
The idea comes after Newsom’s administration already established a relief fund for businesses in the state that are run by illegal aliens—employers who are not covered by the federal bailout for small businesses.
President Donald Trump signed the $2.2 trillion CARES Act in late March, which provides sorely needed financial relief to Americans and employers across the country. Of that fund, California households will receive roughly $30 billion—to be doled out via $1,200 checks per adult earning less than $75,000 annually.
However, these funds are being distributed to those who file their taxes with a Social Security number. People who use an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number—which would include many illegal aliens—are not included in the payout.
There are more than 2 million illegal aliens living in the state of California, according to an estimate by the Public Policy Institute of California.
California Democrats, who enjoy supermajorities in both chambers of the state Legislature, have expressed interest in a state stimulus package. Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon, for example, confirmed to the AP that lawmakers are in talks over a relief fund for illegal aliens, and Senate President Pro Tem Toni Atkins issued similar statements.
However, not everyone is thrilled with the idea.
“I see the state of California and its budget as a house of cards and with this coronavirus-induced recession, I’m just trying to figure out where the money would come from,” said state Sen. John Moorlach, a GOP lawmaker.
“I would say helping undocumented would be a luxury item,” he added.
As of Wednesday morning, more than 17,500 people in California have tested positive for the coronavirus, and more than 440 have died from coronavirus-related illnesses.
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