New York State

FPI’s Immigration Research Initiative examines the role of immigrants in the New York State economy and beyond.

Media Roundup: FPI Cited Statewide on GreenLight

FPI has the data on the issues that matter to New Yorkers. In February 2019, FPI’s report “Driving Together: Benefits of Allowing All New Yorkers to Apply for Licenses” looked at the effects of allowing all state residents, including undocumented immigrants, to apply for a driver’s license. Until 2003, New York State had allowed residents to apply for driver’s licenses without regard to their immigration status and 12 other states—plus Washington D.C. and Puerto Rico – allowed all residents who passed a driver’s test and [...]

2021-01-06T10:32:35-05:00July 24th, 2019|FPI in the News, New York State|

Refugees Help Revitalize and Strengthen New York Vital to Economic Growth in Areas that Need it Most

For Immediate Release: July 19, 2019 Media Contact: Fern Whyland, Communications Director,, 315-436-0558   Refugees Help Revitalize and Strengthen New York Vital to Economic Growth in Areas that Need it Most   July 19, 2019. (Albany, NY)- News that the Trump Administration is considering radically reducing refugee resettlement should be a jolt to New York’s political leadership. New York elected officials have shown bipartisan support for the resettlement program as being both the right thing to do and good for New York. Years of research by the Fiscal Policy [...]

2020-10-27T12:59:48-04:00July 19th, 2019|Immigration, New York State, Press releases|

Push for driver’s licenses for undocumented immigrants intensifies at Capitol

May 5, 2019. This article details the history of this issue and notes that licenses were obtainable in the state prior to a 2001 order stopping the practice prior to Sept. 11 terror attacks. The Fiscal Policy Institute, a left-leaning think tank, earlier this year estimated that 265,000 undocumented immigrants in New York would obtain driver's licenses if the law is changed. It said 64,000 of those are located north of New York City, including 2,500 from the Buffalo area. It said the state and [...]

2021-01-06T10:28:17-05:00May 6th, 2019|FPI in the News, New York State|

Reader’s View: Facts justify ‘Green Light’ driver’s licenses

April 27, 2019. This is an opinion piece written by Terry Diggory, co-coordinator of the Saratoga Immigration Coalition and Julina Guo, staff attorney in the Immigration Law Clinic at The Justice Center at Albany Law School, which lays out the case for allowing all residents to apply for driver's licenses regardless of immigration status. The Fiscal Policy Institute has estimated that Green Light licensing could generate $57 million in combined annual revenue to New York State and county governments, and $26 million in one-time revenue. The [...]

2021-01-06T10:26:27-05:00April 27th, 2019|FPI in the News, New York State|

Advocates note benefits of driver’s licenses for undocumented residents

April 23, 2019. This article covers a forum held on April 23 at Hofstra University where immigrant rights advocates discussed the impacts of allowing all residents, regardless of immigration status, to apply for driver's licenses. Known as Green Light New York, the speakers outlined the measure as both a moral imperative and smart economic policy. Jonas Shaende, chief economist for the Institute, said the measure would generate $57 million in annual revenue for the state, while local governments on Long Island would see $2.6 million [...]

2021-01-06T10:26:09-05:00April 24th, 2019|FPI in the News, New York State|

Saratoga County opposes licenses for undocumented immigrants

April 18, 2019. This article reports that Saratoga county supervisors on Tuesday approved a resolution opposing state legislation that could allow undocumented immigrants to receive driver's licenses. "The board has concerns with the proposed state legislation that would weaken identification requirements for individuals applying for a New York State ID card or driver's license," said Board of Supervisors' Chairman Kevin Tollisen, R-Halfmoon. "The board supports current state law that gives the privilege of a driver's license to those who are here legally as defined by [...]

2021-01-06T10:25:33-05:00April 18th, 2019|FPI in the News, New York State|

Viewpoint: License bill is good for immigrants and for N.Y.

April 17, 2019. This Letter to the Editor points out the benefits of allowing all residents to apply for a driver's license and clarifies why this needed: "A driver's license does not confer immigration status or any other benefit on the immigrant. It simply allows the immigrant to operate a vehicle, increasing revenue for the state and improving safety for all on the road. To withhold driving privileges from immigrants is to essentially deprive them of the ability to obtain food, employment, medical assistance, and [...]

2021-01-06T10:25:17-05:00April 17th, 2019|FPI in the News, New York State|

Immigrants Push for License to Drive

April 11, 2019. This article personalizes the issues facing immigrants without documentation by detailing the problems facing a farm worker in Upstate New York where public transportation and walk-ability makes car transportation a necessity. "Necessity forces us to take a risk," Jiménez said in Spanish as he drove home recently. "We have to work, we have to buy food. Sometimes we get sick and workers like me can't drive to a hospital, can't buy medicine. But I feel I need to take the risk so [...]

2021-01-06T10:23:55-05:00April 11th, 2019|FPI in the News, New York State|

Undocumented Immigrants Push States for Driver’s Licenses: ‘We Have to Work’

April 8, 2019. This article highlights the need for licenses and that "immigrants and their advocates have already gotten access to such licenses in a dozen states including California, Colorado and Illinois, some of them accepting state tax returns as identification. They are now targeting roughly a half-dozen states where they see a friendlier political landscape this year. That includes Wisconsin and New Jersey, where Democratic governors succeeded Republicans, and New York, where Democrats now are in total control of the Legislature." The article points [...]

2021-01-06T10:22:08-05:00April 8th, 2019|FPI in the News, New York State|

Rep. Espaillat endorses New York State measure for driver’s licenses regardless of immigration status

April 8, 2019. This article reports that Rep. Adriano Espaillat, the first Dominican-American member of Congress and himself a former undocumented immigrant, wrote Gov. Cuomo, state Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins and Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie a letter expressing his support to allow the state to issue driver’s licenses to people regardless of their immigration status — including those who are undocumented.. “According to the Fiscal Policy Institute, the influx of one-time driver’s license and vehicle registration fees could bring the state as much as $24 [...]

2021-01-06T10:21:56-05:00April 8th, 2019|FPI in the News, New York State|

Immigration: Can Undocumented Immigrants Get Federal Public Benefits?

April 4, 2019. This article discusses the Trump administration's claims that illegal immigration costs the United States $200 billion a year, which experts challenge. The author goes on to note that undocumented immigrants are not eligible to receive public benefits with the exception of medical treatment for emergencies, emergency disaster relief, immunizations and pregnant women are eligible for Women, Infants & Children (WIC). Trump tweeted in December that the estimated 11,300,000 undocumented immigrants who live in the United States present a staggering bill to U.S. [...]

2021-01-06T10:20:04-05:00April 4th, 2019|FPI in the News, New York State|

Letter: Licenses For Undocumented Residents Would Help

April 3, 2019. In this op-ed the author discusses their support for expanding access to driver's licenses for undocumented immigrants. The author argues that allowing undocumented immigrants to obtain drivers licenses would make roads safer, strengthen trust between law enforcement and immigrant communities, and help immigrants integrate. Mickey Belosi, the author, also argues that in places like rural New York, a driver's licenses is a necessity and that the 2005 REAL ID Act allows states the opportunity to develop a multi-tier driver’s license system that has [...]

2021-01-06T10:19:25-05:00April 3rd, 2019|FPI in the News, New York State|

Early Arrival: NYS Budget’s Census Funding Disappoints Advocates

April 1, 2019. This article discusses the disappointment of advocates across New York State with the allocated $20 million funding for the 2020 census included the governor's state budget, which was released Sunday March 31, 2019. The author goes on to highlight that advocates were asking the state to provide $40 million for community based organizations to do outreach and help with 2020 census work, an estimate calculated by the Fiscal Policy Institute. The author goes on to note that New York has a lot to [...]

2021-01-06T10:14:34-05:00April 1st, 2019|FPI in the News, New York State|

New York Will Dedicate $40 Million to 2020 Census Outreach in State Budget

March 28, 2019. This article covers the reports that $40 million will be included in the budget for community based organizations to help ensure an accurate count in the 2020 census. The author notes that both the Assembly and Senate included the funds in their one-house budgets. The article goes on to highlight that advocates will still urge the governor to include the funds in the finalized budget. State lawmakers will provide $40 million in state money to ensure New Yorkers are ready for next [...]

2021-01-06T10:04:37-05:00March 28th, 2019|FPI in the News, New York State|

Cayuga County Legislature Debates, Opposes Licenses for Undocumented Immigrants

March 27, 2019. This article discusses the Cayuga County Clerk Sue Dwyer's opposition to a proposed bill that would allow undocumented immigrants to apply for driver's licenses. According to the article, the county clerk claims that her staff doesn't have the capacity or training to verify foreign documents and that she is concerned about voter registration documents being given to undocumented immigrants. Rebecca Fuentes, from the Workers' Center of CNY, said that because undocumented workers can't drive, they have to pay $20 to $30 for underground taxis for grocery [...]

2021-01-06T10:04:26-05:00March 27th, 2019|FPI in the News, New York State|
Load More Posts
Go to Top