Mar. 11, 2024

HARRISBURG – Seeking to generate a new revenue source for Pennsylvania, Rep. Mike Cabell (R-Luzerne) plans to soon introduce legislation that would impose a state fee on international remittances made by illegal immigrants. 

“It is estimated that $70 billion is extracted from the U.S. economy annually by undocumented workers who send their earnings back to their home countries,” said Cabell. “My bill would impose a fee to ensure some of that money stays right here in Pennsylvania and doesn’t go toward supporting the economy of a foreign nation.” 

Specifically, Cabell’s proposal would impose a 10% fee on international remittances being sent abroad by an undocumented worker through a money transfer licensee or agent. The revenue would be used to support the popular Property Tax/Rent Rebate program, which benefits seniors and people with disabilities. 

Cabell noted that other states have enacted similar legislation with great success. Oklahoma enacted a 1% fee on international remittances in 2014, generating more than $15 million in annual revenue. Pennsylvania’s estimated undocumented population is far larger than Oklahoma’s, so a remittance fee would result in a greater revenue return for the Commonwealth, as well as help to stem this form of economic hemorrhaging. 

Cabell is currently seeking co-sponsors for his bill, which is companion legislation to a proposal to be introduced in the Senate by Sens. Doug Mastriano (R-33) and Chris Gebhard (R-48). 

Representative Mike Cabell
117th Legislative District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives

Media Contact: Andy Briggs
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