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THE MALDEN ADVOCATE
- Friday, March 17, 2017
Page 3
sored amendment prohibit-
ing a proposal that would al-
low honorably discharged vet-
erans to pay the preferred, low-
er in-state tuition rates and fees
at Massachusetts state univer-
sities from taking effect until
the Department of Higher Ed-
ucation studies the impact of
the lower rates for veterans.
The proposal would offer the
discount to all in-state veter-
ans and to any veteran from
across the nation who desig-
nates Massachusetts as his/her
intended home and moves to
Massachusetts within one year
of attending a state university.
Supporters of the study said
there is no estimate on how
much it would cost the state to
offer this discount to all these
veterans.
Opponents of the study said
it is outrageous that the state
provides the lower tuition rate
for some illegal immigrants
but not to veterans. They not-
ed that sending the bill to a
study committee is the same
as killing it.
The roll call vote is on the
amendment to study, rather
than vote directly on the low-
er tuition rates for veterans.
(A "Yes" vote is for the study. A
"No" vote is against it.)
Rep. Paul Donato
Yes
Rep. Steven Ultrino
Was not yet elected
STUDY REQUIRING THAT
SPONSOR PAY FOR IMMI-
GRANTS (H 3400)
House 128-29, approved a
Democratic leadership-spon-
sored amendment prohibit-
ing a proposal requiring spon-
sors of immigrants who have
green cards (lawful perma-
nent residents) to reimburse
the state for any means-test-
ed state assistance the immi-
grant receives from taking ef-
fect, until after the state con-
ducts a study of the current
system and receives any fed-
eral waivers necessary.
Some suppor ters of the
study said the House should
get more information prior to
voting on this. Others said they
simply oppose the mean-spir-
itedmeasuremeant to hurt le-
gal residents who through no
fault of their own need some
assistance. They noted that the
state shouldn't be punishing
eligible individuals who have
become estranged or discon-
nected from their sponsor.
Opponentsof thedelayques-
tioned why the state is provid-
ing these benefits when each
green card holder is required
by law to have a sponsor who
has promised to be financial-
ly responsible for that person.
The roll call vote is on the
amendment to study, rather
than vote directly on requir-
ing sponsors to reimburse the
state. (A "Yes" vote is for the
study. A "No" vote is against
the study.)
Rep. Paul Donato
Yes
Rep. Steven Ultrino
Was not yet elected
ELIGIBILITY FOR PUBLIC
HOUSING (H 3400)
TheHouse consideredaGOP-
sponsored proposal to require
appl icants and household
members over the age of 18 to
provide a social security num-
ber upon application for pub-
lic housing and prohibit any-
one who does not supply the
number frombeing eligible for
housing.
House 115-44, then ap-
proved a Democratic leader-
ship-sponsored amendment
replacing the Republican pro-
posal with a newone requiring
the state to establish rules and
regulations regarding the dis-
closure and verification of so-
cial security numbers for ap-
plicants of public or subsidized
housing.
The new proposal also re-
quires theDepartment of Hous-
ing and Community Develop-
ment to study and submit a
report on the matter of pub-
lic housing eligibility by July 1,
2016. The report would include
the number of applicants and
household members for state-
assisted public housing who
would be unable to access it if
required to submit a social se-
curity number on their appli-
cation.
Supporters of the new pro-
posal said the earlier one goes
too far and will not solve any
problems.They argued thenew
proposal is a thoughtful and fair
approach to this problem.
Opponents of the new pro-
posal said the earlier proposal
is simple and effective: if you
don’t provide a social security
number, you are not eligible for
public housing. They argued it
is unfair to provide housing to
illegal immigrants.
The roll call vote is on the
amendment to study, rather
than vote directly on requir-
ing a social security number.
(A "Yes" vote is for the study. A
"No" vote is against the study.)
Rep. Paul Donato
Yes
Rep. Steven Ultrino
Yes
PUNISH "SANCTUARY" CIT-
IES ANDTOWNS (H 4200)
House 34-124, rejected a Re-
publican-sponsored amend-
ment that would withhold lo-
cal aid from any cities or towns
that do not enforce federal im-
migration laws. The withhold-
ing would also apply to com-
munities that have established
themselves as "sanctuary" cit-
ies or towns that offer protec-
tion in a variety of ways to ille-
gal immigrants.
Amendment supporters said
cities and towns that encour-
age law-breaking are hurting
this nation. They argued the
state should do everything it
can todissuade thosewho seek
to come here illegally.
Some opponents said the
amendment is a mean-spirited
political stunt and questioned
why supporters would want to
punish students by takingaway
local aid from their schools.
Others said the amendment is
unenforceable, just like a mu-
nicipalitydeclaring itself a sanc-
tuary city is nothing but sym-
bolism.
(A "Yes" vote is for cutting off
local aid to sanctuary cities and
towns. A "No" vote is against
cutting it off.)
Rep. Paul Donato
No
Rep. Steven Ultrino
No
HOW LONG WAS LAST
WEEK'S SESSION?
Beacon Hill
Roll Call tracks the length of
time that the House and Sen-
ate were in session each week.
Many legislators say that legis-
lative sessions are only one as-
pect of the Legislature's joband
that a lot of important work is
done outside of the House and
Senate chambers. They note
that their jobs also involve com-
mittee work, research, constit-
uent work and other matters
that are important to their dis-
tricts. Critics say that the Leg-
islature does not meet regu-
larly or long enough to debate
and vote in public view on the
thousands of pieces of legisla-
tion that have been filed. They
note that the infrequency and
brief length of sessions aremis-
guided and lead to irrespon-
sible late night sessions and a
mad rush to act on dozens of
bills in the days immediately
preceding the end of an annu-
al session.
During the week of March
6-10, the House met for a total
of 22 minutes and the Senate
met for a total of six minutes.
Mon. March 6House 11:03
a.m. to 11:13 a.m.
Senate 11:05 a.m. to 11:08
a.m.
Tues. March 7 No House
session
No Senate session
Wed. March 8 No House
session
No Senate session
Thurs. March 9 House
11:03 a.m. to 11:15 a.m.
Senate 11:08 a.m. to 11:11
a.m.
Fri. March 10 No House
session
No Senate session
Bob Katzen welcomes
feedback at
bob@beaconhillrollcall.com
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