The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) recently announced a plan to increase genealogy-related record request fees by 269 percent to 492 percent, depending upon the type of record(s) requested. The search fee will be non-refundable if nothing is found in their search.
I wrote about this outrageous fee increase earlier at: http://bit.ly/2qwE5rE and at http://bit.ly/34eVO4D. It is nice to see that genealogists and historians are now receiving help from a “high powered” politician. Senator Mitt Romney has joined the public campaign to persuade the immigration agency that imposes the fees to drop the proposed increase.
The Utah Republican has written a letter to acting Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf and the head of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services asking them to account for the fee revenue that funds the little-known genealogy program.
“I understand USCIS’s budget relies primarily on user fees, and the southern border crisis continues to strain the agency’s ability to fulfill its mission,” Romney wrote. “However, I am concerned that drastically raising the Genealogy Program’s fees would harm genealogists across the United States without addressing your budgetary concerns.”
Romney’s office has also encouraged family history enthusiasts through social media channels to let the agency know their concerns during a public comment period on the proposed fees that ends December 30.
You can read more in an article by Matthew Brown in the Deseret News at: http://bit.ly/38pXT0O.