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Two New, Data-Driven Resources Show Ohio Immigrants Make Major Contributions

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ohio's voiceCleveland, OH – A new Associated Press wire story by business writer Paul Wiseman, titled “Why deporting undocumented immigrants could slow US economy,” highlights the economic and fiscal toll of Trump’s mass deportation policy:

If President Donald Trump’s hardline stance on illegal immigration leads to large-scale deportations, among those hurt could be the U.S. economy. That’s the view of many economists, who say the United States can’t afford to suddenly lose vast numbers of the immigrants who work illegally picking fruit and vegetables, building houses, busing tables, staffing meat-packing plants and cleaning hotel rooms … ‘The economic shock would cause widespread ramifications,’ says Ben Gitis, director of labor market policy at the American Action Forum, a conservative think tank. (Read the full AP piece here).

Two new resources estimating the fiscal contributions of undocumented immigrants back-up this argument.

The Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy (ITEP) released an updated report estimating the state and local taxes paid by undocumented immigrants. The ITEP report finds that undocumented immigrants annually pay $11.74 billion in state and local taxes.  In Ohio, they pay over $83 million in state and local taxes per year, at a higher effective tax rate than the top 1%.  If these workers were able to obtain full legal status, their state and local tax contributions in Ohio would rise more than $25 million annually.

As ITEP’s press release accompanying the report highlights, their research findings “dispute the erroneous idea espoused during President Trump’s address to Congress that undocumented immigrants are a drain to taxpayers.”

‘Good policy is informed policy,’ said Meg Wiehe, ITEP director of programs. ‘Just as the horrendous impact of breaking up families under a mass deportation policy should not be ignored, nor should policymakers overlook the significant contributions undocumented immigrants make to our state and local revenues and the economy.’” To view the full ITEP report and related state-specific data, see www.itep.org/immigration/.

Additionally, a new data-driven website by New American Economy, MapTheImpact.org, includes an interactive map showing the economic power of immigrants in all 50 states, the 55 largest U.S. cities, and each of the 435 Congressional districts (hint, immigrants are really really good for the American economy).  Their report on Ohio, which combines data with individual profiles of Ohio immigrants, is also available here.

As John Feinblatt, Chairman of New American Economy, said, “This data puts the economic power of America’s immigrants in stark relief,” said . “Across the map, and in every industry, immigrants strengthen the economies of big cities and small towns alike.”