In an effort to crack down on cities and states that ignore federal immigration law, the House passed bipartisan legislation Friday to encourage cooperation between local, state and federal law enforcement agencies.
H.R. 3009 by San Diego Republican Duncan D. Hunter, the Enforce the Law for Sanctuary Cities Act, passed the House 241 to 179. U.S. Rep. Steve Knight, R-Palmdale, voted “yes.”
H.R. 3009 would deny federal funding from law-enforcement related Department of Justice programs to states or localities that operate as “sanctuary cities” and fail to enforce federal immigration laws.
Localities with policies, statues or procedures that prohibit or restrict communication with the Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) or other government entities regarding an individual’s citizenship of immigration status, or prohibit state or local law enforcement officials from gathering information regarding an individual’s citizenship or immigration status would be ineligible from the following DOJ programs:
* State Criminal Alien Assistance Program (SCAAP) – SCAAP provides federal payments to states and localities that incurred correctional officer salary costs for incarcerating undocumented criminal aliens with at least one felony or two misdemeanor convictions for violations of state or local law
* Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS )- Grant program designed to advance the practice of community policing in law enforcement agencies through training and technical assistance, the development of innovative community policing strategies, and national best practices.
* Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant (Byrne-JAG) – States and localities use Byrne-JAG to test emerging and evidence-based approaches to the public safety challenges in their jurisdictions, including anti-gang strategies, drug courts, reentry programs, and information sharing.
The need for H.R. 3009 was recently highlighted by the tragic murder of 32-year-old California resident Kathryn Steinle, who was allegedly shot and killed by an illegal immigrant – deported five times and convicted of seven felonies – recently released from a San Francisco jail.