Metcalfe’s Arizona-Style Apprehension Measure Offers 140,000+ Illegal Aliens Two Options: Leave PA or Go to Jail

Legislation could save PA taxpayers more than $728 million annually 

Citing mounting taxpayer costs combined with the $1 billion Rendell budget deficit, lost jobs and ever-increasing crime resulting from Pennsylvania’s illegal alien invasion, Representative Daryl Metcalfe (R-Butler) today introduced the newest and toughest addition (House Bill 2479) to the National Security Begins at Home legislative package. 

“With the federal government currently AWOL in fulfilling its constitutional responsibilities to protect American lives, property and jobs against the clear and present dangers of illegal alien invaders, state lawmakers from Arizona to Oklahoma, Georgia to Utah and now Pennsylvania are left with no choice but to take individual action to address this critical economic and national security epidemic,” said Metcalfe.   “The purpose of this legislation is to offer every illegal alien residing in Pennsylvania two options, leave immediately or go to jail.    Whether you came to steal Pennsylvania jobs or to leech off of our state’s fraud-ridden, ‘close your eyes and verify’ welfare system, once this law is enacted there will be absolutely no economic incentives for you to remain here.”  

Metcalfe’s Arizona-modeled legislation would provide state and local law enforcement with full authority to apprehend Pennsylvania’s estimated 140,000 illegal aliens and several other sweeping reform measures, including:  

  • Creating a new criminal offense for illegal aliens who violate federal law by either willfully failing to register as an alien or failing to possess proper proof of such registration when stopped for another primary offense such as a traffic violation. 
  • Requiring law enforcement officers to attempt to verify the immigration status of suspected illegal aliens. 
  • Creating a new criminal offense for persons who are unlawfully present in the United States and are an unauthorized alien applying for work. 
  • Allowing law enforcement officers to arrest illegal aliens for any public offense which would warrant removal from the United States. 
  • Creating a new felony offense for intentionally smuggling illegal aliens for profit; and authorizing law enforcement officers to impound any vehicle driven by an illegal alien, or used to transport illegal aliens. 

House Bill 2479 also incorporates several other previously introduced National Security Begins at Home provisions, including cracking down on “Sanctuary” cities, employers who refuse to use the federal government’s FREE e-verify system to verify the immigration status of potential employees or that knowingly hire illegal aliens; and ending access to public benefits without verification of lawful status within the United States. 

Offering support for House Bill 2479 during today’s press conference included Kathleen Appell, Citizens for Immigration Control in Pennsylvania; Mariann Davies Esq., You Don’t Speak for Me; Jeff Lewis, national director, Federal Immigration Reform and Enforcement Coalition (FIRE); and Ned Pfeifer, president, Eagle Forum.    

Dan Stein, president of the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) was also on hand to once again highlight FAIR’s recent research on the ever-increasing taxpayer costs directly associated with Pennsylvania’s illegal alien population, which has nearly tripled since 2000

  • Pennsylvania has the 16th largest concentration of illegal aliens in the United States. 
  • Providing education to the estimated 48,500 illegal alien children (or 2.7 percent of K-12 students) attending Pennsylvania’s public schools costs state taxpayers nearly $660 million annually.    
  • Expanding this initial price tag to include unreimbursed health care expenditures and incarceration costs, total state taxpayer costs for illegal aliens increases to $728 million annually or about $150 per Pennsylvania resident household

On the upside, FAIR’s report also concluded that the annual fiscal costs to Pennsylvania taxpayers associated with illegal aliens are not inevitable. The complete Cost of Illegal Immigration to Pennsylvanians report can be reviewed and downloaded at

“Giving Pennsylvania law enforcement full authority to apprehend illegal alien invaders for eventual deportation has everything to do with fully restoring the rule of law in favor of tax-paying Pennsylvania citizens who are currently footing the bill for no less than $728 million annually to clothe, feed, educate, medicate and incarcerate illegal aliens,” said Metcalfe.  “Most importantly, this legislation recognizes that Pennsylvania citizens have a constitutional right to expect their rights and laws to be enforced, especially against foreign invaders.” 

Rep. Daryl Metcalfe
12th District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives

(724) 772-3110
(717) 783-1707
Contact:  Ty McCauslin
House Republican Public Relations
(717) 772-9979

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