DREAM Act Supporters Disappointed With Compromise, But Say It’s a Start


By David Cruz

“I am overwhelmed with joy,” said Sen. Teresa Ruiz.

There were tears at a noontime press conference today as sponsors and supporters of the so-called NJ DREAM Act announced a compromise that would ultimately get Gov. Chris Christie’s signature.

“We have come to an agreement on a conditional veto that, to me, the most important part is, that the governor will sign today, making this legislation effective immediately,” said Senate President Steve Sweeney.

The deal strips the Tuition Assistance Grant eligibility from the bill, which will ensure the governor’s signature but left some supporters rankled.

“What more does he want? We’re taxpaying residents. We are New Jerseyans. We call this our home. This was the best bill for New jersey and we’re only getting half of it,” said Anna Bonilla of Wind of the Spirit, an alliance of of immigrants and non-immigrants offering help and support to the immigrant community.

“This is what compromise looks like and I’ll be waiting for all the apology letters to come in from all the people who said, some in this room, who said that I was not serious about tuition equality and that this was an election year prank,” Christie said.

In the sometimes convoluted process of making law in New Jersey, the Senate bill — already approved with the tuition assistance provision intact — was sent on to the Assembly for approval before going back to Christie for his conditional veto, Republicans dissenting all the way.

“Work with us; we’ll work with you to make it right for everybody, but it doesn’t seem to go that way all the time. We have to wait for the governor to make a conditional veto and then react from that,” said Assemblyman C.J. Brown.

  • sickofnjtaxes

    NJ family care and In-state tuition should prove paying taxes:.

    I work for a company that processes nj family care.

    Teresa Ruiz. says: We’re taxpaying residents and residents of NJ. ”

    . Ok well prove it ! NJ familycare state insurance program accepts employer letters when pay stubs are not available.

    This is for day laborers who do not pay income tax for majority are hispanics as day laborers who work under the table or different employers.

    So What more does he (Gov Christie) want? .

    I think Gov Christie should ask for proof of paying taxes first we should not accept pay with no tax deductions .

    This should be mandatory for both programs ,
    NJ family care and In-state tuition.

    Also someone who lived here all their life should be first priority for placement over someone that lived here under 5 years for both programs ( proof of date of entry into US for nj fam care adults current rule )