INITIAL ENTRY, ADJUSTMENT, AND CITIZENSHIP ASSISTANCE GRANT PROGRAM.
Creates Initial Entry, Adjustment, and Citizenship Assistance grants to support the implementation of programs that provide direct immigration assistance to the following people:
· Individuals preparing applications for RPI status, including applying for waivers;
· Individuals adjusting status to RPI, blue card, or green card status;
· LPRs seeking to naturalize;
· Applicants seeking civics and English assistance.
PILOT PROGRAM TO PROMOTE IMMIGRANT INTEGRATION AT STATE AND LOCAL LEVELS.
Establishes a pilot program to award grants to promote immigrant integration at state and local levels and to establish New Immigrant Councils. To apply, an entity must submit an application that includes a proposal, the number of immigrants in its jurisdiction, and a description of the challenges facing those immigrants in integrating into the community. Priority will be given to state and local governments that:
· Will use matching non-federal funds;
· Show collaboration with public and private groups;
· Are in the top 10 states with the highest rate of foreign-born residents; or
· Experienced a large increase in immigration in the past 10 years.
Governments can use a grant to do the following:
· Form New Immigrant Councils consisting of 15 to 19 stakeholders from various organizations;
· Provide subgrants to local organizations that will help:
o Improve English language skills;
o Engage parents with limited English in their child’s education;
o Improve access to workforce training;
o Teach civics and U.S. history;
o Improve financial literacy; and
o Engage receiving communities in the integration process.
Amends the requirements for naturalization to:
· Waive the English language and civics requirements for anyone who is over 65 years of age and has lived in the U.S. for a total of at least five years after being lawfully admitted for permanent residence.
· Waive the English language requirement for anyone who is over 60 years of age and has lived in the U.S. for a total of at least 10 years after being lawfully admitted for permanent residence.
· Allow the DHS Secretary (previously the Attorney General) to waive, on a case-by-case basis, the civics requirement for anyone who is over 60 years of age (previously 65) and has lived in the U.S. for a total of at least 10 years (previously 20) after being lawfully admitted for permanent residence.