$46,654: Annual Cost of Detaining Illegal Alien Exceeds Average American Income

The GAO report—“Immigration Detention: Opportunities Exist to Improve Cost Estimates”—examined how ICE calculates its anticipated budgetary needs for detaining illegal aliens. It discovered, for example, that ICE had made some basic mathematical errors in preparing its budget justifications for Congress, including a $34.7 million multiplication error in its fiscal 2014 request and a $129 million multiplication error in its fiscal 2015 request.

ICE also made a $4,000 multiplication error in calculating its fiscal 2018 budget justification, the report said.


“The fiscal year 2018 request also contains a multiplication error that resulted in ICE requesting less funds—$4,000—than using the correct calculation,” said the report.


Assuming that the $133.99 “bed rate” for fiscal 2018 is accurate, that means it will cost the federal government $48,906.35 to detain an illegal alien for 365 days this year.

[Click on the table to enlarge it.]




Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.