On March 22, President Donald Trump announced that he signed into law a $1.3 trillion budget that he said will help further his goals of border protection and immigration reform.
As part of the budget, the president allocated $1.57 billion for new construction of the border wall and replace any existing fencing that may be broken; $703 million in additional funding for Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), a 10% increase; and $505 million for the Department of Justice’s Executive Office for Immigration Review, with additional funding for new immigration judges.
But in an article from The Washington Times, Republicans complained the budget did not address Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) while Democrats crowed that the president did not get everything he wanted in regards to border security and immigration enforcement. According to the article, the Democrats inserted language into the budget that only revamped the existing fence along the border, and stopped funding for 500 more Border Patrol agents or 1,000 new ICE officers who were going to be part of the president’s “deportation force.”
Still, those who should have been happy with the Democrats’ changes to the budget were not. The all-Democrat Congressional Hispanic Caucus was quoted as saying that the budget “would fund Trump’s border wall and mass deportation force.”
The American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA)also expressed disappointment with the budget. AILA President Annaluisa Padilla was unhappy with the fact that the budget did not address the issue of protecting DACA recipients from deportation, while Benjamin Johnson, the group’s executive director, added that the money will go into “the Trump administration’s deportation machine and will result in increased indiscriminate enforcement tactics, tearing American families apart.”
With immigration policies transforming rapidly under the Trump administration, it is now more important than ever for non-citizens to know their legal rights and available pathways to legal residence or citizenship. If you are concerned about the legal status of yourself or your loved ones and are seeking guidance on your immigration matter, contact the experienced New York immigration lawyers at Bretz & Coven, LLP. With two immigration law offices located in New York, New York and Clark, New Jersey, the firm’s attorneys are available to provide non-citizens in the tri-state area the legal representation they need. For more information or to schedule a consultation, call (212) 267-2555 or fill out our contact form.