Congressman Faleomavaega announced today that he is supporting the bipartisan plan for immigration reform offered by certain members of the House and Senate.
“I commend Senator Arlen Specter, Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, for offering legislation which includes recommendations from Senators Edward Kennedy, Joseph Lieberman, John McCain and other Senators to provide undocumented immigrants with the opportunity for earned legalization,” Faleomavaega said. “While there is a long ways to go before this measure becomes law and while the bill is currently stalled, the possibility exists that undocumented immigrants could earn legal status.”
Among the provisions now proposed for consideration, Faleomavaega supports the idea of allowing illegal aliens an opportunity to earn legal status if they have not been convicted of certain crimes. To earn legal status, an individual --
- must have entered and continuously resided in the US before January 2004
- must remain continuously employed
- must pay $2,000 in penalties
- must pass security background checks
- must pass a medical exam
- must learn English
- must learn US history and government
- must pay all back taxes
- must get to the ‘back of line’ behind all applicants waiting for green cards and wait at least 6 years
- after obtaining green card, must wait another 5 years before becoming eligible to apply for naturalization.
“For members of our own Pacific Island community, I am monitoring this immigration bill very closely and I am hopeful that whatever we pass in Congress in the coming weeks or months will address the serious needs of so many of our Pacific Islanders who are now in the US either as undocumented immigrants or as overstayers,” Faleomavaega concluded.