Recently, the Flagstaff City Council passed a resolution in support of DACA, Dreamers and comprehensive immigration reform. I was proud that the resolution had bipartisan support, and if you consider the facts it becomes clear why sensible immigration policy makes sense regardless of political affiliation. Immigrants are a vital part of Arizona’s economy – they are employees, business owners and taxpayers.
According to a recent study published by the New American Economy,22 percent of Arizona’s entrepreneurs are immigrants (available at newamericaneconomy.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/02/nae-az-report.pdf). In 2014, immigrants paid about $1.7 billion in state and local taxes and had spending power around $16 billion. Immigrant-owned businesses generated $1.3 billion in 2014. They also paid into entitlement programs, including $543.6 million into Medicare and $2.1 billion into Social Security. Simply put, Arizona’s economy needs immigrants.
Immigrants are more than twice as likely to start new businesses. These range from more than half of this nation’s grocery stores to 51 percent of the country’s billion dollar start-ups. Here in Arizona, 40 percent of our Fortune 500 companies were founded by immigrants or the children of immigrants. These companies generate $49.6 billion in annual revenue and employ 54,000 people.
Read the full story from Flagstaff Business News: “Why Flagstaff City Council Supports DACA”