Thursday, October 15, 2009
Arkansas has one of the nation's fastest growing Hispanic populations
Little Rock,AK ---Arkansas has one of the nation's fastest growing Hispanic populations and is home to an estimated 160,000 Hispanic people. Studies by the Pew Hispanic Center in 2007 concluded that about half of the state's immigrant population are living illegally in the U.S.
Gov. Mike Beebe, a Democrat, had opposed the proposal last year because he said it would duplicate laws that are already on the books. Beebe spokesman Matt DeCample said the governor was likely to again oppose the measure if it was similar to last year's proposal.
``The governor's concern then was this would create bigger government and cost Arkansas taxpayers more money, which is two things we don't want to do,'' DeCample said.
Secure Arkansas earlier this year had opposed a measure in the Legislature that would have granted the children of illegal immigrants in-state tuition rates at Arkansas colleges and universities. The state Senate ultimately rejected the proposal, which had also faced opposition from Beebe and the state's higher education director.