Rhode Island is doing it:
Linking the presence of undocumented workers to Rhode Island’s financial woes, Gov. Don Carcieri signed an executive order that includes a series of steps to combat illegal immigration.
The order signed Thursday requires state agencies and companies that do business with the state to verify the legal status of employees. It also directs the Rhode Island State Police and prison and parole officials to more aggressively find and deport illegal immigrants.
The Republican governor said he understands that illegal immigrants face hardships — but he does not want them in Rhode Island, America’s smallest state. “If you’re here illegally, you shouldn’t be here illegally. You shouldn’t be here,” Carcieri said.
Willamina, Oregon is doing it:
City leaders in this small timber town are considering a city ordinance that would create what would be called an ‘illegal alien-free zone.’
The ordinance would allow any law enforcement officials, within the town’s city limits, to stop anyone and ask for proof of citizenship.
Any illegal immigrants caught within the city limits would face deportation, if federal law enforcement cooperates.
Kansas is doing it:
After a debate that ended in the early morning, the Senate passed a bill Thursday dealing with illegal immigration and sent it to the House, which planned to take up its version later in the day.
The 40-0 vote was among the first items the Senate took up after ending some seven hours of debate about 12:45 a.m. Thursday. Most of the debate centered on trying to return the bill to its original form, which backers said was a stronger version.
Since the two chambers have different versions, the final immigration bill will be worked out in the coming days by House and Senate negotiators.
Among other things, the Senate bill makes it a crime to use false identification to get a job, engage in human trafficking or coerce workers. It also creates an illegal immigration enforcement unit within the attorney general’s office.
The bill makes hiring illegal immigrants a civil offense for businesses. Courts could order employers to stop hiring illegal workers and the employer could be fined or jailed for contempt of court if it doesn’t comply with the order.
It also prohibits illegal immigrants from receiving public benefits except those mandated by the federal government. State officials say that already is the case but it’s not required by law.
“It’s a good bill. It has very strong enforcement provisions that were not part of the original bill,” said Senate Majority Leader Derek Schmidt, an Independence Republican.
But other senators felt the bill didn’t go far enough and are hoping it can be strengthened when House and Senate negotiators begin their work.
“The Kansas Legislature could be an enabler to illegal immigration if we pass a weak bill. As other states enact tougher legislation, Kansas will become a sanctuary state,” said Sen. Jim Barnett, an Emporia Republican who led the fight to return to the original bill.
Sen. Tim Huelskamp, a Fowler Republican, added: “We’ll maintain a catch and release program. This bill does very little.”
Dealing with illegal immigration has been high on the agenda of many legislators, who say they are responding to constituents’ concerns about the increased number of illegal immigrants in Kansas. Some estimates put the number at 90,000.
Senators voted 27-12 Wednesday night to reject the original bill. It would have required employers to use the federal E-Verify database to determine whether workers are in the country legally and would have imposed penalties including loss of business licenses for repeat offenders.
The reworked bill removed the E-Verify requirements and penalties but allows businesses that voluntarily use E-Verify to use it as a defense in a lawsuit if a person who cleared the system is an illegal immigrant.
And this now-famous judge is doing it:
Judge Peter Olszewski Jr. gave three criminal defendants a choice: learn English or spend 24 months in the Luzerne County, Pa., jail.
Olszewski issued the unusual sentence after four men pleaded guilty to robbery-related charges through a translator.
“Do you think we are going to supply you with a translator all of your life?” he asked during the plea hearing, according to The Times Leader in Wilkes-Barre, Pa.
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