With all the huffing and puffing about the services that we need to pay for immigrants in North Carolina, which around here really means that there are too many "Mexicans", we should remember that Hispanic individuals greatly contribute to our economy. In fact, a recent UNC study pegs their impact at $9 billion and growing. From the Triangle Business Journal:
North Carolina's growing Hispanic population contributes more than $9 billion each year to the state's economy, a figure that could double by 2009 if current trends continue, according to results of a recent study at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
UNC researchers said that current migration trends could boost the Hispanic economic impact in North Carolina as high as $18 billion by 2009.
And Hispanics nearly pay for the services that they use through direct and indirect taxes:
Hispanics contribute about $756 million to North Carolina each year in direct and indirect taxes but cost the state approximately $817 million annually for education costs, health care and corrections.
The numbers are pretty close to even and will only converge more as Hispanics become more established in the area.
The study also found areas of differences between Hispanics and the rest of the population:
Compared to a non-Hispanic average annual household salary of more nearly $46,000, Hispanic households in North Carolina bring in about $32,000 each year. Conversely, Hispanic households in the state average about 3.7 people, compared to 2.4 people for non-Hispanic households.
I hope that, as Hispanics become more established in the area, the income gap can be closed. And I think that, with the closing of the income gap, the differences in family size will change since family size is often related to class and income. It is a very interesting study that should be thrown at anyone that is complaining of all the services the "Mexicans" are taking in our state. Tell them that Hispanics are adding to our state just like everyone else.