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Latino Daily News

Tuesday April 12, 2011

Maryland’s DREAM Act One Step Away from Become State Law

Maryland’s own version of the DREAM Act is one step away from becoming law after passing in the state House in a 74-66 vote this last Friday.

Maryland’s DREAM Act would allow undocumented students to pay in-state tuition fees, in essence recognizing them as state residents, if they have graduated from a Maryland high school and can provide tax returns for the last three years. 

The student or the parents can provide the tax return and if the student’s family members are very ill the tax return requirement will be waived.  In addition, male college applicants will have to register for the military Selective Service if they want the tuition discount. 

The savings for undocumented students is substantial with out of state students paying $24,831 versus in-state tuition of $8,416.  The bill will now move to the Senate and if passed Governor Martin O’Malley has indicated he will sign the bill.  A different version of the DREAM Act had passed the Senate last month but was altered to include three amendments that were more restrictive. 

Once the legislation becomes law, Maryland will then become the 11th state to offer in-state tuition for undocumented students.