There were fewer than 5,000 illegal immigrants in North Dakota in 2012, making up about 0.3 percent of the state’s population, according to the Pew Research Center
Unauthorized immigrants also accounted for 0.5 percent of the state’s labor force in 2012, according to the Pew report. However, data from the Institute for Taxation and Economic Policy revealed
that illegal immigrants paid $5.5 million in state and local taxes in 2012, which included sales, personal income, and property taxes.
Legal status for unauthorized immigrants would increase tax contributions to $6.4 million, according to the American Immigration Council
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An analysis by the Perryman Group found that the state would lose $55.1 million in economic activity if unauthorized immigrants were removed from North Dakota. That would include some 360 jobs.
Immigrants overall accounted for 2.9 percent of the state’s workforce or 11,181 workers in 2013, the U.S. Census Bureau reported. A study by the University of Georgia found that the purchasing power of Latinos in the state was $528 million in 2014, an increase of 1,550 percent since 1990. The Asian buying power totaled $456 million, an increase of 1,040 percent since 1990.
Education plays a role in immigrants coming to North Dakota. The number of immigrants with college degrees increased by 58.7 percent from 2000 to 2011, according to a report from the Migration Policy Institute
. More than 45 percent of North Dakota’s foreign-born residents aged 25 and older had bachelor’s or higher degrees in 2011, compared to 25.8 percent of native-born residents.
North Dakota has one of the smallest populations in the country, but it had the largest population growth of any state with a two-percent increase from 2011 to 2012, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. While foreign-born residents were a tiny percentage, they increased by more than 14 percent since 2000.
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Immigrant-owned businesses helped economic activity in North Dakota, generating some $20 million in annual income for the state each year from 2006 to 2010, according to MaptheImpact.org
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