More Mexicans leave the U.S. than enter November 19, 2015
More Central Americans flee violence to enter U.S. November 14, 2015
Immigrants say about-face on visas costs them millions September 30, 2015
Asians to become largest U.S. immigrant group September 28, 2015
Everett attorney helps businesses navigate immigration issues September 21, 2015
Fewer babies being born in U.S. illegally September 12, 2015
Dutch find dead stowaway in planeís landing gear September 12, 2015
India, China outpace Mexico on U.S. immigration August 30, 2015
Texas denies birth certificates to U.S.-born children July 19, 2015
Most Americans back legal status for immigrants June 5, 2015
The assessment of the bill's impact on Old-Age, Survivors and Disability Insurance is another entry in a growing body of economic data amassing on both sides of the immigration reform debate.
"Overall, we anticipate that the net effect of this bill on the long-range OASDI actuarial balance will be positive," Stephen C. Goss, the chief actuary of the Social Security Administration, wrote in a letter to Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., an architect of the bipartisan legislation.
The chief actuary wrote that the number of workers paying taxes into the system would increase as the bill provides legal status for the estimated 11 million immigrants who entered the country illegally or overstayed their visas.
"Many of these individuals already work in the country in the underground economy, not paying taxes, and will begin paying taxes," the letter said.
The letter also said that over the long haul, the benefits for immigrants who become legal would "become more significant." At the same time, children of immigrants would "have substantial positive effects" on the fund.
Enhanced security proposed for the southwestern border "will reduce the number entering the country without authorization by about half a million per year by the time the measures are fully implemented," the letter said.
The chief actuary noted that the estimates were preliminary, and that the Social Security Administration was developing a longer, 75-year estimate, as is normally done for the fund.
The bill heads to committee Thursday for the first of several days of amendment debate. A report this week from the conservative Heritage Foundation said that legalizing immigrants would be a $6.3 trillion drain on federal revenues because they would collect more in government services than they pay in taxes. Other conservatives disputed the report.
The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office is expected to present a separate analysis in the weeks ahead.
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