Legislators Who Give In-State Tuition to Illegal Immigrant Students Are Voting to Violate State Law

Last week when the state’s Senate Education Committee voted to give in-state college tuition to illegal immigrant students, the seven committee members that passed SB1014 also voted to violate a 2012 Tennessee law.

By voting to pass SB1014, Senators Gresham, Tate, and Tracy voted against the “Eligibility Verification for Entitlements Act” (EVEA), the law they had each voted to pass in 2012.

Bill sponsor Sen. Todd Gardenhire (R-Chattanooga) and Senators Crowe, Dickerson, and Haile also voted yes.

Senators Hensley and Kelsey voted no.

Sen. Jim Tracy (R-Shelbyville) was a named co-sponsor of the EVEA.

The 2012 EVEA, which the  TN Board of Regents’ General Counsel confirmed last week, classifies in-state tuition is a state benefit. The EVEA requires that:

“…every state governmental entity and local health department shall verify that each applicant eighteen (18) years of age or older, who applies for a federal, state or local public benefit from the entity or local health department, is a United States citizen or lawfully present in the United States in the manner provided in this chapter.”

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