College Assistance: Illegal Immigrants Get Millions, Dependents of Deceased Military Denied A Few Hundred Thousand
Assemblyman Brian Manktelow (R,C,I,Ref-Lyons) is outraged as the Assembly withheld a bill (A.2991) he cosigned in the Higher Education Committee which would provide free tuition expenses for SUNY and CUNY to dependent family members of military personal who have died in the line of duty. According to Assemblywoman Deborah Glick, chairwoman of the Higher Education Committee, the program, estimated to cost a few hundred thousand dollars, is too costly. In a committee meeting on Tuesday, April 9, Glick stated the bill was a budget item that should not be discussed at this time.It is sickening that we are providing assistance for college to those who disrespect our country by entering it illegally, yet nothing for those who have had a loved one sacrifice their life for this country, said Manktelow. I am also greatly disappointed in Assemblywoman Glick, who referred to this bill twice as an entitlement, when in order to qualify you must be a dependent of a deceased member of the military. This is an opportunity to help a dependent of a member of the military, who paid the ultimate sacrifice, have a better chance at life through earning a college degree. We managed to find millions of dollars for free college for illegal immigrants, why cant we find a few hundred thousand for families who have just suffered the most unthinkable loss? If the DREAM Act is moving forward, so should this bill. Since Assemblywoman Glick has stated this is a budget issue, if we cant push this bill forward this year, I plan to push for its inclusion in next years state budget.