[First Reprint]







Sponsored by:


District 20 (Union)


District 29 (Essex)


Co-Sponsored by:

Senators Pou, Buono, Gordon and Whelan






†††† Urges Congress to pass legislation creating comprehensive pathway to United States citizenship.



†††† As reported by the Senate State Government, Wagering, Tourism & Historic Preservation Committee on March 11, 2013, with amendments.


A Senate Resolution urging the Congress of the United States to pass legislation to establish a path to citizenship.


†††† Whereas, America has a long and rich heritage of immigration but our current immigration system is broken as immigrants are faced with an insufficient numbers of visas for workers to support the U.S. labor force, arbitrary visa caps creating backlogs and separating families, exploitation by employers through wage and workplace violations, and inadequate government infrastructure to support the immigrant population; and

Whereas, Comprehensive immigration reform must provide law-abiding, tax paying immigrant workers and their families with an opportunity to obtain legal permanent residency and eventually United States citizenship through fair and reasonable requirements; and

Whereas, The reduction of immigration backlogs should be included as a part of comprehensive immigration reform so that United States citizens may be reunited with family members requesting to immigrate; and

Whereas, 1[Temporary worker program policies which provide workers with full labor and civil rights protections and the opportunity to pursue legal permanent residency in the United States should be included in comprehensive immigration reform] Any new worker visa program must provide workers with all rights afforded by the Constitution of the United States, portability of visas so that workers can change jobs, and the ability for workers to petition for permanent residency1; and

Whereas, A meaningful opportunity for immigrant students to pursue a college education after high school graduation should be included in comprehensive immigration reform; and

Whereas, United States immigration policies must actively promote the civic integration of newcomers to decrease the barriers when they attempt to acquire the skills needed to participate in our nationís civic life such as English instruction and civics proficiency courses; and

Whereas, Comprehensive immigration reform must include a discussion of the fundamental cause of migration to the United States, such as the need for sustainable social and economic development in the communities where migrants originate, and our nation must more actively pursue partnership opportunities with sending nations to determine feasible development strategies that would enable them to better meet the economic needs of their population; and

Whereas, The federal government must take action to reform our
immigration laws to continue our heritage of immigration by incorporating President Obama's Executive Order into law which grants work permits and permission to stay in America for anyone brought to this country before they were 16 years of age and by establishing a path to citizenship for all immigrants who have not committed criminal offenses and protects the unity and sanctity of the family; and

Whereas, The federal government has the exclusive authority to develop, implement, and enforce immigration policy under the United States Constitution, and the regulation of immigration is solely the responsibility of the federal government; and

Whereas, Comprehensive immigration reform must strengthen our national security and the public safety of our communities and neighborhoods as the United States has the right of every sovereign nation to secure its borders through laws that regulate the entry of persons from other countries; and

Whereas, The United States must provide resources for immigration enforcement and implement enforcement measures that will accomplish these goals in an effective and humane manner; now, therefore,


†††† Be It Resolved by the Senate of the State of New Jersey:


†††† 1.††† This House calls upon the United States Congress to promptly pass legislation to create a comprehensive pathway to United States citizenship.


†††† 2.††† Duly authenticated copies of this resolution, signed by the President of the Senate and attested by the Secretary thereof, shall be transmitted to the President and Vice President of the United States, the Majority and Minority Leader of the United States Senate, and the Speaker and Minority Leader of the United States House of Representatives, and to each member of Congress elected from the State of New Jersey.