TABLE 7.4 Per Capita Net Fiscal Impacts of Immigrants and Their U.S.-Born Children < 20 (1996 dollars)

Government Level

United States


New Jersey

All Other States











Total per capita





As for the third and later generations in California and New Jersey, they have more than twice the positive fiscal impact compared with those in the United States as a whole.

This section has these implications:

  • The analysis of this chapter is consistent with the case studies reported in the previous chapter.
  • It is not possible to extrapolate from the experience of California to the nation; it is too atypical.
  • Fiscal impacts, at both the federal and the state and local level, are substantially more negative or less positive in California than in the rest of the country, and, overall, California accounts for the entire negative net impact of immigrants and their young U.S.-born children in the country; in other regions taken together, immigrants and their children have an overall positive impact.

Constructing Longitudinal Age Profiles

These cross-sectional age profiles and their components from specific programs, with additional disaggregation by education and time since arrival for immigrants, form the building blocks for the longitudinal analysis. They are used to construct longitudinal age profiles on the assumption that each age profile shifts upward at the assumed rate of productivity growth, or I percent annually (based on the budget projection assumptions made by the Congressional Budget Office—CBO). 17 The real costs of Medicare and Medicaid per enrollee have been rising particularly rapidly, and are expected to continue to do so in the future. We follow CBO (1996) in using the projections by the trustees of Medi-


Actually, for complicated reasons, we assumed a productivity growth rate of 0.010766 rather than 0.01.

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