While the migrant crisis in Illinois continues to consume human services budget dollars, State Senator Andrew Chesney (R-Freeport) has filed a resolution that seeks to spur federal action on the issue.
Chesney’s Senate Resolution 746, filed on January 30, expresses Senate support of the U.S. House of Representatives’ effort to impeach U.S. Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas.
“Immigration reform must take place at the federal level, and we need a Homeland Security Secretary who acknowledges the national crisis and commits to solving it,” said Chesney. “More than 10 million migrants have crossed into the United States via our southern border with Mexico in recent years. That’s higher than the 2023 state populations of 40 of our 50 states.”
More than 35,000 of the migrants have entered through the southern border and made their way to Illinois over the last few years. Upon their arrival, Illinois becomes responsible for their food, housing, healthcare, and other wraparound services.
“We just had to push back against an attempt to divert state funds away from vulnerable populations like those living with intellectual and developmental disabilities,” said Chesney. “School superintendents are also reporting increases in class sizes and demands for dual language instruction teachers. These realities directly affect taxpayers.”
SR 746 points out that the federal Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) has reported a significant spike in attempts to smuggle large amounts of fentanyl and illicit fentanyl-containing tablets across the southern border, resulting in higher incidents of fentanyl overdoses and deaths in the United States, and that the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) has confirmed nearly 1.8 million “gotaways,” those who have entered the United States illegally and have not been apprehended by customs or border patrol officers, have entered the United States during the same timeframe. The FBI also acknowledged a rising number of individuals on the terrorist watchlist who have crossed the southern border into the United States, and while most have been apprehended, others from the terrorist watchlist remain in this country and pose a serious threat to national security.
“Historical data tells us that most individuals entering our country claiming to be asylum seekers will not be granted asylum and therefore will not be granted lawful, permanent status in our country,” said Chesney. “That keeps the door wide open on the demand for human services budget dollars that are rightly earmarked for veterans, disabled people, low-income Illinoisans, seniors, and other vulnerable citizen groups.”