Arizona Sues to Block College District’s Tuition Break for Immigrant Students

Arizona filed a lawsuit on Tuesday seeking to block the Maricopa County Community College District from offering in-state tuition rates to immigrant students who were brought to the United States illegally as children and who have obtained work permits under the terms of the Obama administration’s deferred-action program. College officials moved to offer the lower rate last year, after concluding that work permits were already on the state’s list of documents needed to prove legal residency. That decision defied Gov. Jan Brewer, who has said that such students who obtain work permits are not residents according to state law. Officials for the college district had asked the state’s attorney general, Thomas C. Horne, to seek clarity from a judge on the law, and his office had been threatening to sue over the policy for months.

“We feel that it’s too bad that he felt the need to do this and spend public funds, actually, it’s double public funds since we are a public entity and so are they,” said Tom Gariepy, the school district’s spokesman. “We still think that our policy will be upheld and that the judge will see things our way.”

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