Warm Southern Breeze

"… there is no such thing as nothing."

How Alabama lost $10.8 BILLION dollars with the stroke of a pen.

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Thursday, February 2, 2012

It’s official!

Alabama‘s anti “immigration” law has or will cost the state:

a) 70,000-140,000 jobs with $1.2-5.8 billion in earnings, (ii) $2.3-10.8 billion in Alabama Gross Domestic Product (GDP) or 1.3-6.2 percent of the state’s $172.6 billion GDP in 2010, (iii) $56.7-264.5 million in state income and sales tax collections, and (iv) $20.0-93.1 million in local sales tax collections.

That is a direct quote from the research done by Dr. Samuel Addy, Ph.D., with the Center for Business and Economic Research, of the Culverhouse College of Commerce and Business Administration at The University of Alabama.

As a bit of background, readers may recall that Beason – formerly a state District 17 representative from Gardendale, now state senator (his state website) – is the man whom on Saturday, February 5, 2011 addressed the Cullman County Republican Party breakfast, and in regard to the issue of illegal immigration said, “empty the clip, and do what has to be done”.

Mr. Beason also made similarly derogatory and racist remarks about nearby cities of Arab and Albertville by saying, “If you don’t believe illegal immigration will destroy a community go and check out parts of Alabama around Arab and Albertville.

Albertville mayor Lindsey Lyons responded by saying, “I think that is going a little overboard to say that this has destroyed our community.”

Arab mayor Gary Beam said, “We don’t have the type of industry in Arab that usually attracts a lot of illegal workers to an area. I know there is an illegal immigration problem in this country, but Arab is not an area that has been devastated by this.”

Sam Rolley reported that story in the Sunday, February 6, 2011 edition of the Cullman Times.

Now… continuing on to the heart of the matter.

Naturally, proponents of the law – formerly known as HB 56 (It even has its own Wikipedia page! Readers may find text of the law here.) – would dispute the research findings by Dr. Addy, yet they cannot point to any definitive research that would contradict his findings, nor can they point to any research done in advance of the bill-now-law which would demonstrate any cost savings or benefit to the state or her citizens.

State representative Micky Hammon, a Decatur Republican and bill co-sponsor said in response to Dr. Addy’s research, “That’s baloney. It’s clear the study overestimates the negative and underestimates the the positive to skew the result toward an agenda. If 40,000 illegal workers leave the state, they free up jobs that homegrown Alabamians are happy to have. It doesn’t take a Ph.D. to see that since the law was signed, unemployment has dropped from 10% to 8.1%. In Marshall County, once a known hotbed for illegal immigration, unemployment has plunged from 10% in June to 6.9% last month.”

One mistake that Mr. Hammon and others like him make is that they fail to take into account the slow, but general increase in the employment rate.

The research acknowledges that some factors may be difficult – if not impossible – to measure, while the law’s proponents claim that there is a 100% direct cause-and-effect from their actions. In this case to so assert is blatantly ludicrous. The research specifically states in the conclusion, that “Economies are demand-driven so any policy, regulation, law, or action that reduces demand will not contribute to economic development no matter how well-intentioned. Nobody can fault the intent of the immigration law, which targets illegal immigration, but the law itself is costly mainly because it reduces demand in the state economy. Instead of boosting state economic growth, the law is certain to be a drag on economic development even without considering costs associated with its implementation and enforcement. Some of the law’s costs and benefits are qualitative and others are quantifiable, but difficult to estimate. While the law’s costs are certain and some are large, it is not clear that the benefits will be realized.”

Readers may download the research – available in pdf file format – here.

4 Responses to “How Alabama lost $10.8 BILLION dollars with the stroke of a pen.”

  1. […] How Alabama lost $10.8 BILLION dollars with the stroke of a pen. (warmsouthernbreeze.wordpress.com) […]


  2. OldUncleMe said

    You know that ‘whom’ is used when it is the object of a sentence or phrase, unlike this, “…Dr. Bentley was a state representative from Tuscaloosa county whom collaborated with Beason on the matter.”

    Here the object is Dr. Bentley.

    Enjoy! /..


    • Warm Southern Breeze said

      Thanks for your readership, and for the tip! I do endeavour to keep things grammatically proper, so I do appreciate your help! Surely there’s a quick-n-easy rule which I can bear in mind – much like the “i before e” kind.


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