NCSL Letter to U.S. House Regarding DREAM ACT (S. 729)

* Letter also sent to the U.S. Senate.  

The Honorable Nancy Pelosi              The Honorable John Boehner
Speaker of the House                         House Minority Leader
235 Cannon HOB                               1011 Longworth HOB
Washington, D.C. 20515                    Washington, D.C. 20515 

Re: DREAM Act (S. 729) 

Dear Speaker Pelosi and Representative Boehner:  

The National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL)  urges you to restore state authority to decide whether or not to provide post-secondary education benefits (“in-state tuition”) to children of unauthorized immigrants, as included in the Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors (DREAM) Act (S. 729). 

NCSL believes states should be allowed to determine whether or not immigration status should be a factor in eligibility for in-state tuition. In 1996, Congress passed legislation that preempted state authority in this area. Before the 1996 preemption, states routinely determined these issues without help from or interference from the federal government. The DREAM Act does not require states to offer in-state tuition to children of unauthorized immigrants, but restores the authority of states to make that decision. 

The DREAM Act removes barriers that keep young people from achieving success.    States have an interest in helping all children become productive members of society by maximizing their educational opportunities. 


Representative Roy Takumi
Hawaii House of Representatives
Chair, NCSL Education Committee

CC: Members of the U.S. House of Representatives