The Kansas Statehouse passed a bill Monday that would rescind a law allowing illegal immigrants to pay in-state college tuition, The Wichita Eagle reported Tuesday.
Proponents of the legislation argue that the immigrant students in the country without permission cost the state more than $1 million a year.
“We should stop punishing the citizens and stop rewarding the lawbreakers,” state Rep. Terri Lois Gregory, a Republican, told the newspaper.
State Rep. Lance Kinzer, also a Republican, said he believes the current law conflicts with federal immigration laws.
Another Republican lawmaker, state Rep. Mario Goico lobbied against repealing the current law by telling his own immigration story of fleeing communist Cuba. He attended Wichita State University and paid out-of-state tuition even though he graduated from a Kansas high school.
“When you find yourself in that situation, you feel like baggage,” Goico said.
The current law allows for illegal immigrant students to pay in-state tuition if they have attended a Kansas high school for three years and graduated or earned a general equivalency diploma. They are ineligible for state or federal financial aid.
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