Western Brooklyn

Senator Golden Is No Dreamer On Tuition Assistance For Undocumented Residents

State Senator Marty Golden. Photo by Erica Sherman

State Senator Marty Golden said he won’t support the New York Dream Act, legislation that would allow undocumented residents in New York to have access to tuition assistance for higher education.

Up until recently, Golden wouldn’t have even needed to address this issue because the bill seemed all but dead. The bill was first introduced three years ago by Senator Bill Perkins and had never gained much steam, according to an article by NBC New York. But with the support of New York City’s Mayor Bill de Blasio and several Democratic lawmakers, the bill has gained momentum.

It passed in the Democratic-led Assembly and now waits approval in the Senate – where Republicans and conservative Democrats are stalling. Golden is among those opposed to the bill.

NBC New York writes:

Advocates for the Dream Act say they hope to convince Republican Sens. Martin Golden, Lee Zeldin and Andrew Lanza to back the legislation. Golden said he doesn’t support the Dream Act, but would back a “Dream Fund” to provide scholarships through private sources. Zeldin and Lanza didn’t return calls seeking comment.

If passed, the bill would include a budget of $25 million through the Tuition Assistance Program for illegal immigrant students in public and private colleges.

It’s unclear how many students would be able to access this fund but according to a reportĀ  by state Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli, 8,300 such students in the CUNY and SUNY systems would qualify. Currently, New York’s laws are more lenient than many other states when dealing with such students. It is among 16 states thatĀ  allow those students to pay in-state tuition, which is significantly cheaper than paying out-of-state rates.

Comment policy


  1. Actually, you’re right. I wrestled with it, but defaulted to what other media outlets were using. I should have used the terminology used in the bill: undocumented residents. I’m going to go and change it now.

  2. The campain #DropTheIWord and #NoHumanIsIllegal targeted Associated Press and large newspapers. AP changed it and also NYTimes. Thanks!

  3. It is really a shame that Senator Golden does not support the NY DREAM Act – – this is a bill that would give children access to financial aid so they can attend college and pursue their dreams while also strengthening the economy. Seems narrow not to support such a common sense bill.

  4. Children do not choose to illegally migrate to America through brokerage. Once their families move here, they are registered for schools and as a result they become part of our community. To disregard their status as students upon their high school graduation is callous.