Mayors to Pres. Trump: Preserve the Dream

UPDATE: September 5, 2017 

The actions today by the Trump Administration to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals is wrong. Rescinding DACA does not reflect the values of our city, state, or nation.

DACA has protected the dreams of thousands of young people in Salt Lake City.

Across the state of Utah, it has allowed nearly 10,000 young people to come forward, pass background checks, and live and work in the country.

These DREAMers improve our community, strengthen our economy, and most importantly enrich our local and national experience.

Weeks ago, on the 5th anniversary of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, I joined more than 100 mayors and county officials from 35 states, in a letter to the President urging him to continue the program until a legislative solution is enacted for all undocumented immigrant youth.

But as we have seen today, our calls have fallen on deaf ears.

It is now time for Congress to act.

I urge our federal delegation in the strongest possible terms to take the necessary action to protect DACA recipients.

Stand with these young people, and have heart in fixing this.

They reflect the best of our nation and deserve to achieve their American Dream.

August 15, 2017

On the 5th anniversary of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program Mayor Jackie Biskupski joined more than 100 mayors and county officials from 35 states, in a letter to President Trump urging him to continue the program until a legislative solution is enacted for all undocumented immigrant youth.

“As its name suggests, DACA has protected the dreams of thousands of young people in Salt Lake City,” said Mayor Biskupski. “These DREAMers improve our community, strengthen our economy, and most importantly enrich our local and national experience. Preserving DACA means defending the best of what we are as Americans, and I urge the Administration to keep this dream alive.”

In Utah, DACA has allowed nearly 10,000 young people to come forward, pass background checks, and live and work in the country. According to a 2017 report from the Center for American Progress, ending DACA would cost Utah nearly $476 million in annual GDP losses.

Full Letter to President Trump

Dear Mr. President:

As mayors and county executives in the Cities for Action coalition, we write to urge you to maintain your past support for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program and to engage with Congress on bipartisan efforts to enact the DREAM Act. In the immediate term, we urge you to commit to continue the DACA program until a legislative solution is achieved.

Cities for Action is a national coalition of over 150 mayors and county executives, representing over 55 million residents, that advocates for programs and policies that promote immigrant inclusion to create stronger and safer cities. As local government leaders throughout the country, we know that immigrants make our communities stronger economically, culturally, and socially. For these reasons, we strongly support the DACA program.

Localities have long supported federal immigration measures that advance immigrant integration, because municipalities are where the needs of our nation’s immigrants are felt most keenly. Local governments took a frontline implementation role with the 2012 DACA directive by investing money in outreach and legal services, working with school districts to create new databases to facilitate record requests, and improving access to public documents.

Now a small number of states are pressuring your Administration to take away DACA from nearly 800,000 young people who have come forward, passed background checks, and have made the most of their opportunity to live and work in America lawfully. This is in no one’s best interest. These young people reflect who we are as a coalition: cities with vibrant immigrant communities working toward the American dream in the ultimate nation of immigrants.

DACA recipients are students, employees, and family members. They contribute to our country with their taxes, their innovative ideas, and the indelible positive impact they leave on our communities. Protecting the relief afforded to this population, and formalizing it legislatively will have immense social and economic benefits to our local governments. Therefore, allowing these young people to remain in the country with DACA or permanently through a legislative solution—a position supported by the vast majority of American voters across the political spectrum—would only further reveal the vast potential of these young people.

We also know in empirical terms the effects DACA has on our cities and states, and what we would lose if DACA were to be taken away:

  • 1.3 million young undocumented immigrants enrolled or immediately eligible for DACA contribute an estimated $2 billion a year in state and local taxes. This includes personal income, property, and sales and excise taxes.
  • DACA-eligible individuals pay on average 8.9 percent of their income in state and local taxes.

We care about all of our residents, including those with DACA and their families. We want to make sure that our residents can continue living without the fear of being uprooted from their homes: our cities and counties.

You have singular power and influence to shape this moment in American history, and “show great heart”—as well as pragmatism and economic sense—in your decision about how to protect our young, undocumented immigrants who have relied on the U.S. government’s word for security and stability. We call on you to stand with these young people, and stand for the best of what America represents.

Sincerely,

Kathy Sheehan, Mayor of Albany, NY

Allison Silberberg, Mayor of Alexandria, VA

Ed Pawlowski, Mayor of Allentown, PA

Ethan Berkowitz, Mayor of the Municipality of Anchorage, AK

Kasim Reed, Mayor of Atlanta, GA

Stephen D. Hogan, Mayor of Aurora, CO

Steve Adler, Mayor of Austin, TX

Catherine E. Pugh, Mayor of Baltimore City, MD

Kevin Kamenetz, County Executive of Baltimore County, MD

Joseph Baldacci, Mayor of Bangor, ME

William A. Bell, Mayor of Birmingham, AL

Martin J. Walsh, Mayor of Boston, MA

Suzanne Jones, Mayor of the City of Boulder, CO

Antonio Martinez, Mayor of Brownsville, TX

Byron W. Brown, Mayor of Buffalo, NY

Louis A. DePasquale, City Manager of Cambridge, MA

Lydia E. Lavelle, Mayor of the Town of Carrboro, NC

James Diossa, Mayor of Central Falls, RI

Pam Hemminger, Mayor of Chapel Hill, NC

Andy Berke, Mayor of Chattanooga, TN

Thomas G. Ambrosino, City Manager of Chelsea, MA

Rahm Emanuel, Mayor of Chicago, IL

Mary Casillas Salas, Mayor of Chula Vista, CA

Andrew J. Ginther, Mayor of Columbus, OH

Biff Traber, Mayor of Corvallis, OR

Michael S. Rawlings, Mayor of Dallas, TX

Clay Lewis Jenkins, County Judge of Dallas County, TX

Nan Whaley, Mayor of Dayton, OH

Michael B. Hancock, Mayor of Denver, CO

Rick Sowers, Mayor of Dodge City, KS

Riley H Rogers, Mayor of Dolton, IL

Mark S. Meadows, Mayor of East Lansing, MI

Veronica Escobar, County Judge of El Paso County, TX

Acquanetta Warren, Mayor of Fontana, CA

Karen Freeman-Wilson, Mayor of Gary, IN

Domenick Stampone, Mayor of Haledon Borough, NJ

Nancy Rotering, Mayor of Highland Park, IL

Alex Morse, Mayor of Holyoke, MA

Sylvester Turner, Mayor of Houston, TX

Stephen T. Williams, Mayor of Huntington, WV

Chokwe A. Lumumba, Mayor of Jackson, MI

Steven M. Fulop, Mayor of Jersey City, NJ

Mark Holland, Mayor of Kansas City, KS

Sly James, Mayor of Kansas City, MO

Madeline Rogero, Mayor of Knoxville, TN

Virg Bernero, Mayor of Lansing, MI

Robert Garcia, Mayor of Long Beach, CA

Eric Garcetti, Mayor of Los Angeles, CA

Paul R. Soglin, Mayor of Madison, WI

Judy Arnold, President of Marin County Board of Supervisors, CA

Daniel T. Drew, Mayor of Middletown, CT

Tom Barrett, Mayor of Milwaukee, WI

Peggy A. West, County Supervisor of Milwaukee County, WI

Wayne M. Messam, Mayor of Miramar, FL

Ike Leggett, County Executive of Montgomery County, MD

Megan Barry, Mayor of Nashville, TN

Toni N. Harp, Mayor of New Haven, CT

Noam Bramson, Mayor of New Rochelle, NY

Bill de Blasio, Mayor of New York City, NY

Alan L. Nagy, Mayor of Newark, CA

Setti Warren, Mayor of Newton, MA

Harry W. Rilling, Mayor of Norwalk, CT

Libby Schaaf, Mayor of Oakland, CA

Sue Higgins, Mayor of Oakley, CA

Buddy Dyer, Mayor of Orlando, FL

Jose “Joey” Torres, Mayor of Paterson, NJ

Jim Kenney, Mayor of Philadelphia, PA

Greg Stanton, Mayor of Phoenix, AZ

William Peduto, Mayor of Pittsburgh, PA

Adrian O. Mapp, Mayor of Plainfield, NJ

Liz Lempert, Mayor of Princeton, NJ

Jorge Elorza, Mayor of Providence, RI

Hillary Schieve, Mayor of Reno, NV

Tom Butt, Mayor of Richmond, CA

Lovely Warren, Mayor of Rochester, NY

Darrell Steinberg, Mayor of Sacramento, CA

Dave Cortese, Board of Supervisors President of Santa Clara County, CA

Chris Coleman, Mayor of Saint Paul, MN

Jackie Biskupski, Mayor of Salt Lake City, UT

Ron Nirenberg, Mayor of San Antonio, TX

Sylvia Ballin, Mayor of San Fernando, CA

Edwin M. Lee, Mayor of City and County of San Francisco, CA

Sam Liccardo, Mayor of San Jose, CA

Pauline Russo Cutter, Mayor of San Leandro, CA

Javier M. Gonzales, Mayor of Santa Fe, NM

Ted Winterer, Mayor of Santa Monica, CA

Edward B. Murray, Mayor of Seattle, WA

George Van Dusen, Mayor of Skokie, IL

Joseph A. Curtatone, Mayor of Somerville, MA

Pete Buttigieg, Mayor of South Bend, IN

Elizabeth A. Goreham, Mayor of State College Borough, PA

Stephanie A. Miner, Mayor of Syracuse, NY

Marilyn Strickland, Mayor of Tacoma, WA

Andrew Gillum, Mayor of Tallahassee, FL

Sarah Eckhardt, County Judge of Travis County, TX

Eric E. Jackson, Mayor of Trenton/Mercer County, NJ

Jonathan Rothschild, Mayor of Tucson, AZ

Brian P. Stack, Mayor of Union City, NJ

Richard G. Carlston, Mayor of Walnut Creek, CA

Muriel Bowser, Mayor of Washington, DC

John Heilman, Mayor of West Hollywood, CA

Don Saylor, County Supervisor of Yolo County, CA

Jim Provenza, County Supervisor of Yolo County, CA

Mike Spano, Mayor of the City of Yonkers, NY

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