Groups Push Citizenship Ahead of Fee Increase

Several community groups are launching an education campaign in Houston to encourage immigrants to become citizens. Houston Public Radio's Capella Tucker reports the push for naturalization comes months before an expected increase in fees.

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The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services has proposed a naturalization fee increase from $400 to $675 per person. Houston Community College southeast campus Community Outreach Coordinator Felipe Reyes says sometimes it's a lack of information, sometimes it's cultural differences that stop a person from applying for citizenship.

"I'll speak for mine, Mexico. We don't believe too much in politicians. We don't believe in politicians because literally it was the way the government said it was going to be, voting didn't make a difference. So they have that kind of mentality, why do I become a citizen... nothing is going to change."

Reyes says Houston has more than 50,000 legal permanent residents who are eligible to apply for U.S. citizenship. Immigration attorneys, English Service Providers and various non-profit groups are joining in the campaign. Capella Tucker, Houston Public Radio News.

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