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Arizona’s economy could lose $1.3B from DACA removal, report finds

(Christopher Millette)/Erie Times-News via AP)

PHOENIX — Arizona could lose as much as $1.3 billion from its economy after the Trump administration ended the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program this week.

According to the Los Angeles Times, Arizona is estimated to lose $1.3 billion in gross domestic product if current recipients of the program, also known as DACA, lose their work permits.

Arizona was expected to be among the states that would lose the most under the DACA removal. California would be hit the hardest, with an estimated loss of $11.6 billion, followed by Texas, New York, Illinois and New Jersey.

At least 28,000 people in Arizona have applied for DACA since 2012, according to ABC2 in Baltimore, and nearly 800,000 young immigrants nationwide have been granted temporary protections from the program.

Related: Phoenix high school students walk out after Trump removes DACA

According to the Cato Institute, 305,297 of those immigrants will lose their work permits in 2018.

What is DACA?

DACA was created in 2012 under former President Barack Obama and granted temporary work permits to undocumented immigrants who were brought to the United States as children.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions said on Tuesday the program was an “unconstitutional exercise of authority by the executive branch” but said the Trump administration was urging Congress to find another way to protect the so-called DREAMers.

U.S. Sen. Jeff Flake said Trump’s decision proved that executive orders were meant to be temporary and a permanent solution was needed.

“Congress must act immediately to pass permanent, stand-alone legislation to lawfully ensure that children who were brought here by their parents, through no fault of their own, are able to stay and finish their education and continue to contribute to society,” he said in a statement.

U.S. Sen. John McCain said rescinding DACA is an “unacceptable reversal of the promises and opportunities that have been conferred to these individuals.”

Arizona State University President Michael Crow vowed to work with students who were under DACA, including updating resources for students and helping work with Congress to pass the DREAM Act or another form of legislation.

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