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Mother To Stay In U.S. One More Month

January 15, 1986

PHOENIX, Ariz. (AP) _ An illegal alien who gave birth to eight children in the United States and said she frequently relied on welfare has avoided deportation for at least another month.

After a 10-minute meeting with Scott Coffin, deputy district director of the Immigration and Naturalization Service, Hilda Tovar was given permission Tuesday to remain in the United States at least until Feb. 15. Officials said that could be extended further.

Miss Tovar had been ordered to return today to Mexico, which she left in 1969.

Her children are U.S. citizens by birth and are free to remain in the country if Miss Tovar is deported. They range in age from 18 months to 13 years. She said she raised them herself and has never married.

Her supporters, who include some prominent politicians, said they admired her wish to keep her family together, and some said supporting her children would cost Arizona up to $1 million if she were deported.

Rep. Morris Udall, D-Ariz., has told immigration officials he would file a measure seeking permission for Miss Tovar to remain in the United States permanently.

Miss Tovar said she pays $38 monthly at a federally subsidized three- bedroom apartment. She often has relied on welfare and food stamps, but does not do so now, she said.

Miss Tovar said her income is about $170 a week, from part-time work at a school kitchen and as a maid. She said she would be unable to support the children in Mexico.

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