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New York legislature passes COVID relief measure to give $15,600 payment to illegal immigrants

The one-time payment is part of a $2.1 billion package

Published: April 8, 2021 7:23am

Updated: April 8, 2021 10:33am

The Democrat-controlled New York legislature has passed a budget deal that includes a $2.1 billion fund for illegal immigrants – including a one-time, $15,600 payment for those who lost their job during the pandemic.

The billion-dollar fund is by far the biggest of its kind in the country and signals New York's shift toward policies championed by progressive Democrats, according to the New York Times. In comparison, California has a $75 million cash assistance proposal for illegal immigrants.

New York lawmakers said the "Excluded Workers Fund" is intended to provide economic relief to workers who did not qualify for previous such measures.

The fund is a part of a larger $212 billion budget deal upon which lawmakers agreed Tuesday.

"When New York became the epicenter of this pandemic, countless workers lost their job and have struggled to make ends meet,” New York Assembly member Layota Joyner, a proponent of the fund, said. “Our immigrant communities are an essential part of our economy."

The state Senate's top Republican, Rob Ortt, said, "Democrats are raising taxes and using your federal stimulus dollars to enact a radical agenda rather than helping veterans, small main street businesses, teachers, and senior citizens."

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