From the NY Times:
Much of the public debate surrounding proposals to allow illegal immigrants to receive state financial aid for college has centered on questions of legality: Would such legislation legitimize the status of people in the country without authorization?
But lawmakers have also been puzzling over another critical matter: How much would it cost the state?
Advocates for the bill who met this week with a member of Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo’s staff said costs seemed to weigh heavily on the minds of administration officials.
The State Education Department estimated the cost at $627,428 per year for a measure it sent to the Legislature in December. That proposal is one of at least two circulating in Albany, commonly known as the New York State Dream Act.
The department’s bill, like the other measure, would make state tuition assistance available to illegal immigrants attending college in the state. But the Education Department’s estimate has been criticized by some analysts as unrealistically low.