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Greg Siskind on Immigration Law and Policy

ICE TO DOUBLE FOREIGN STUDENT TAX

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The folks at ICE are promising enhancements to the Student Exchange Visitor Program in exchange for a massive increase in fees. Somehow, I've heard that line before. Here's what's increasing:



  • The rule would double the fee for nonimmigrant students to $200


  • Most exchange visitor fees would rise from $100 to $180


  • The fee for au pairs, camp counselors and summer work/travel program participants remains $35


  • There is no fee for government sponsored exchange visitors


  • Fee for school certification would rise from $350 to $1,700


  • Site visit charges would increase from $230 to $655 for each site visit

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Comments

  1. A Nony Mouse's Avatar
    I've always wondered how they come to these new figures and costs. Do they have some strange backwards-divisions equation where they put in the "How Much Money We Want Per Year" value that then works out "How Much We Have To Charge People" to make that result happen?

    Or do they just save time and effort and pull the values out of thin air?

    Maybe they consult with dark forces over a bowl of fresh lamb's blood?
  2. George Chell's Avatar
    With the collapse of the US dollar this amount should be affordable for most foreign students. The US dollar is soon becoming more worthless than a toilet paper.
  3. Chakademus's Avatar
    You usually get less of any product or activity whose tax is increased. Does America really want fewer international students? Or is it the arrogance of thinking that we are so good, that people will pay whatever it costs to come here, we don't need to compete?
  4. George Chell's Avatar
    "Or is it the arrogance of thinking that we are so good, that people will pay whatever it costs to come here, we don't need to compete?"

    Arrogance. But, more out of desparation to raise money to fund programs as the economy goes down the tubes. Based on the willingness and ability to pay and 75% of foreign students are able to pay. But, what bothers me is Section 214(b). I hear some consular officers are particularly instructed to deny students visas the first and the second time and give it at the third attempt..so that they can make three times the amount on fees. But, that ploy may not be working anymore as more foreign students especially from Asia flock to Australia and Singapore where they can easily get a permanent resident visa (not H1-B equivalent, but permanent resident) and the jobs from the US moves to these countries in search of these skills.
  5. A Nony Mouse's Avatar
    "Or is it the arrogance of thinking that we are so good, that people will pay whatever it costs to come here, we don't need to compete?"

    I don't think it's quite that sinister, no matter how people spin it. It is more likely a case of "if we throw more money at it, it will improve", which seems to be the government's defacto policy for quite a few things.

    War in Iraq, anyone?
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