Government eyes boost to immigration filing fees

LOS ANGELES (AP) - The federal government is considering raising fees on applications for immigration-related services to help offset a shortage in revenue.

Alejandro Mayorkas, director of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, told reporters Wednesday in Los Angeles the agency is considering cutting costs or raising fees in the next two years to alleviate the problem.

Agency officials have blamed the revenue shortfall on an overall drop in immigration-related applications being filed amid an economic slump.

The decline also comes after the agency increased its fees in 2007. The cost of applying for citizenship, including a fingerprinting fee, is now $675, up from $400.

Mayorkas would not say how much the fees might be raised or which services might be affected.