June 22, 2008

The story from the Gwinnett officials should begin with “once upon a time” NO SAVE IN GWINNETT COUNTY EITHER

Posted by D.A. King at 11:07 am - Email the author   Print This Post Print This Post  

Immigration: County denied federal policy

By Camie Young
Senior Writer

LAWRENCEVILLE – A Gwinnett County application for a federal immigration status program has been rejected.

While the county government uses a government E-Verify program to verify the legal immigration status of its employees, the county is not enrolled in the Systematic Alien Verification for Entitlements (SAVE) program, which is required by state law for verification of any disbursement of public benefits.

Maria Woods, director of the county’s financial services department, said the county submitted paperwork in April 2007 and was in “approval pending status” from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. Calls by a reporter prompted officials to check the county’s status, and Woods said she learned the county’s application had been rejected.

The only explanation, she said, was that the federal department had undergone some staffing changes since the application. Calls to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security were not immediately returned.

“We’ve been sort of sitting in limbo waiting,” Woods said.

Officials are working on a new application, she said, so the program can be used to verify the status of those seeking U.S. Housing and Urban Development grants.

D.A. King, an activist with the Dustin Inman Society, said the only county to enter into a memorandum of understanding with the federal government for the SAVE program is Cobb County, even though a state law enacted a year ago requires it. No Gwinnett city has signed up for the program.

“Public benefits are clearly defined in federal law,” King said. “Those benefits include any professional or commercial license provided by an agency of a state or local government. While brave Border Patrol agents are risking – and losing – their lives to stop illegal immigration, we watch as local governments in Georgia enable illegal aliens by providing business licenses and occupational tax certificates to those who escape apprehension.”

Woods said the county did not have immediate plans for checking statuses of those paying business occupation taxes, although she said the county has its own system for checking the status of those seeking licenses for regulated businesses.

Regulated businesses include those involving alcoholic beverages, adult entertainment, vehicles for hire, massage establishments, precious metal dealers and escort/dating services. Those businesses account for about 6 percent of the total licenses in Gwinnett, Woods said.

The entire story and comments HERE

June 21, 2008

High fuel costs has a silver lining –

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Fort Worth Star-Telegram

Fuel costs sending “immigrants” back to Mexico

Construction projects and landscaping jobs are being delayed because contractors can’t afford to pick up workers. And workers faced with additional costs for gasoline or the purchase of a car are giving up on day-labor jobs and going back to their home countries…


June 19, 2008

English language legislation gathers steam across the USA

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“Critics do not see progress. Some say the increase in the measures nationwide sends a hostile message to newcomers.””It just poisons the atmosphere in local communities,” says John Trasvina, president and general counsel of the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund.

USA Today

English language legislation gathers steam across the USA

English as an official language has gained momentum as proponents keep going to the ballot box with measures that discourage bilingual ballots, notices and documents. — Thirty states now have laws specifying that official government communications be in English, says U.S. English, a group that promotes the laws…


June 18, 2008

From Jerry Gonzalez/Sam Zamerripa’s site – they want you to believe all Latinos want open borders

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Sen. Robert Menendez’s advice for Barack on getting Latino votes
Found in juantornoe.blogs.com
Posted on 2008-06-17

June 17, 2008

Sen. Robert Menendez says a Barack Obama-Hillary Clinton ticket on the ballot in November makes sense, but Obama has his support no matter who the Democratic presidential nominee chooses.

Menendez, of Hoboken, who was one of Clinton’s biggest backers, added that he’d never pressure a presidential candidate to pick a certain running mate. About his own participation in the Obama’s campaign, Menendez said he planned to meet with the Illinois senator “to see what exactly he (Obama) needed me to do.”

“Certainly we are going to do everything we need to do in New Jersey to help him … and that any advice I could give on the national Latino stage I’d be happy to do it,” the one-time Union City mayor said.

Obama is going to have to do a better job wooing Latino voters, said Menendez, who added that he spoke with Obama two weeks ago.

“I said to him (Obama) that he needs to speak to the community in a way that they understand that he understands their issues,” said Menendez.

“For example, we all know this economy doesn’t work for working families. But the highest rate of unemployment for any group in America is Latinos,” he said.

On how the New York senator lost the nomination, Menendez said Clinton failed to organize in caucus states and allowed Obama to frame the debate.

Although Clinton made “strategic mistakes,” she garnered 18 million votes, only lost to Obama by 100 or so delegates and won critical swing states like Pennsylvania and Ohio, Menendez said.

The Jersey Journal


June 17, 2008

Section 9 of the Georgia Security and Immigration Compliance Act – SEND IT TO YOUR MAYOR AND COUNTY CHAIR!

Posted by D.A. King at 7:15 pm - Email the author   Print This Post Print This Post  


Title 50 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, relating to state government, is amended
by adding a new chapter at the end thereof, to be designated Chapter 36, to read as follows:
(a) Except as provided in subsection (c) of this Code section or where exempted by federal
law, on or after July 1, 2007, every agency or a political subdivision of this state shall
verify the lawful presence in the United States of any natural person 18 years of age or
older who has applied for state or local public benefits, as defined in 8 U.S.C. Section
or for federal public benefits, as defined in 8 U.S.C. Section 1611, that is
administered by an agency or a political subdivision of this state.
(b) This Code section shall be enforced without regard to race, religion, gender, ethnicity,
or national origin.
(c) Verification of lawful presence under this Code section shall not be required:
(1) For any purpose for which lawful presence in the United States is not required by
law, ordinance, or regulation;
(2) For assistance for health care items and services that are necessary for the treatment
of an emergency medical condition, as defined in 42 U.S.C. Section 1396b(v)(3), of the
alien involved and are not related to an organ transplant procedure;
06 SB529/AP
S. B. 529
– 13 –
(3) For short-term, noncash, in-kind emergency disaster relief;
(4) For public health assistance for immunizations with respect to immunizable diseases
and for testing and treatment of symptoms of communicable diseases whether or not such
symptoms are caused by a communicable disease; or
(5) For programs, services, or assistance such as soup kitchens, crisis counseling and
intervention, and short-term shelter specified by the United States Attorney General, in
the United States Attorney General’s sole and unreviewable discretion after consultation
with appropriate federal agencies and departments, which:
(A) Deliver in-kind services at the community level, including through public or
private nonprofit agencies;
(B) Do not condition the provision of assistance, the amount of assistance provided,
or the cost of assistance provided on the individual recipient’s income or resources; and
(C) Are necessary for the protection of life or safety.
(6) For prenatal care; or
(7) For postsecondary education, whereby the Board of Regents of the University System
of Georgia or the State Board of Technical and Adult Education shall set forth, or cause
to be set forth, policies regarding postsecondary benefits that comply with all federal law
including but not limited to public benefits as described in 8 U.S.C. Section 1611, 1621,
or 1623.
(d) Verification of lawful presence in the United States by the agency or political
subdivision required to make such verification shall occur as follows:
(1) The applicant must execute an affidavit that he or she is a United States citizen or
legal permanent resident 18 years of age or older; or
(2) The applicant must execute an affidavit that he or she is a qualified alien or
nonimmigrant under the federal Immigration and Nationality Act 18 years of age or older
lawfully present in the United States.
(e) For any applicant who has executed an affidavit that he or she is an alien lawfully
present in the United States, eligibility for benefits shall be made through the Systematic
Alien Verification of Entitlement (SAVE) program operated by the United States
Department of Homeland Security or a successor program designated by the United States
Department of Homeland Security. Until such eligibility verification is made, the affidavit
may be presumed to be proof of lawful presence for the purposes of this Code section.
06 SB529/AP
S. B. 529
– 14 –
(f) Any person who knowingly and willfully makes a false, fictitious, or fraudulent
statement of representation in an affidavit executed pursuant to subsection (d) of this Code
section shall be guilty of a violation of Code Section 16-10-20.
(g) Agencies or political subdivisions of this state may adopt variations to the requirements
of this Code section to improve efficiency or reduce delay in the verification process or to
provide for adjudication of unique individual circumstances where the verification
procedures in this Code section would impose unusual hardship on a legal resident of
(h) It shall be unlawful for any agency or a political subdivision of this state to provide any
state, local, or federal benefit, as defined in 8 U.S.C. Section 1621 or 8 U.S.C. Section
1611, in violation of this Code section
. Each state agency or department which administers
any program of state or local public benefits shall provide an annual report with respect to
its compliance with this Code section.
(i) Any and all errors and significant delays by SAVE shall be reported to the United States
Department of Security and to the Secretary of State which will monitor SAVE and its
verification application errors and significant delays and report yearly on such errors and
significant delays to ensure that the application of SAVE is not wrongfully denying benefits
to legal residents of Georgia.
(j) Notwithstanding subsection (f) of this Code section any applicant for federal benefits
as defined in 8 U.S.C. Section 1611 or state or local benefits as defined in 8 U.S.C. Section
1621 shall not be guilty of any crime for executing an affidavit attesting to lawful presence
in the United States that contains a false statement if said affidavit is not required by this
Code section.”

Feds deport more felons from Georgia prisons

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Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Feds deport more felons from Georgia prisons
Last year, state doubled number of inmates it sent to ICE, compared to 2002

After years of complaints about the failure of the federal government to deport foreign nationals who commit serious crimes, new statistics for Georgia indicate stepped-up efforts are having an impact, particularly in state prisons…

Washington β€” After years of complaints about the failure of the federal government to deport foreign nationals who commit serious crimes, new statistics for Georgia indicate stepped-up efforts are having an impact, particularly in state prisons.

The Georgia Department of Corrections transferred 433 felons to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement for deportation proceedings in 2007, the most recent year for which state and federal data are available. That’s more than twice as many as the 189 handed over to the agency in 2002.

Under federal law, a criminal who is in the country illegally is subject to deportation, as are those who are here legally but who commit aggravated felonies, such as drug trafficking, violent crimes or theft, carrying sentences of at least one year in prison.

However, enforcement nationwide has come under criticism for more than a decade. Government auditors have faulted federal immigration authorities for failing to set up a reliable system to monitor the prison population and remove those eligible for deportation. Studies have repeatedly found that thousands of convicts who should have been deported were instead released back into the community.

In Georgia, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution five years ago conducted a study of prison data and found violent criminals who were set free instead of being sent back to their home countries. At least three child molesters who were illegal immigrants had served time in Georgia prisons but escaped the attention of federal authorities. All three were released back into the community.

“There were people who slipped through the system,” said Ray Simonse, who a year ago took over as Atlanta field director for detention and removal for Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

Since then, the job of tracking and removing foreign inmates nationwide has been taken over by ICE, a new agency in the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, and Simonse said the effort has been intensified.

He now has a bigger staff thanks to criminal alien program teams of 10 specialists who monitor foreign-born inmates in his region, which includes Georgia and the Carolinas. Simonse said in those three states, his agency now provides “100 percent” coverage of state prisons. The agency has also set up ties with some, but not all, county and local jails.

Simonse said his teams interview foreign-born inmates as the first step to identifying those who might be returned to their home countries.

Of equal importance, the Atlanta regional office now has the space to hold convicted criminals during the deportation process. The Stewart Detention Center, a 1,700-person facility in Lumpkin, 150 miles southwest of Atlanta, opened two years ago as one of the nation’s largest holding facilities for the immigration agency.

Two or three times a week, air transports arrive at the Columbus airport to pick up detainees and take them to Mexico or Central America, Simonse said.

The overall effectiveness of the effort to remove deportable criminals is difficult to gauge, in part because there are as many as 450,000 foreign-born inmates scattered among 45,000 prisons and jails nationwide. Officials at ICE and the U.S. Department of Justice said they have no way of providing exact counts or the percentage who are illegal immigrants.

Even so, an examination of about a dozen cases of foreign-born inmates released by Georgia prisons in the past few years indicates that nearly all had been reviewed by federal immigration officers.

Those set free after serving time appear to have been released properly. Some had become U.S. citizens before their crimes, one had come from a country β€” Vietnam β€” that refused to allow his return, and a convicted murderer had been transferred to Canada to serve out a life sentence.

In one case, the system may have broken down, however.

David Alejandro Velasquez, a Mexican national, served a year in prison for robbery and “impersonating another” in Georgia’s Whitfield County and was released to immigration authorities for deportation in 2005. A year later, Velasquez was arrested in the same county on similar charges.

Asked about the Velasquez case, ICE officials at first said Velasquez was in Mexico. They were unaware that he was in Georgia and again serving prison time, although the information was available on the public Web site of the Georgia Department of Corrections.

Simonse said his office would investigate the case because an inmate who was deported could be charged for returning to the United States.

ICE officials did not reply to repeated requests for further information about that investigation, whether the earlier deportation order had ever been carried out, or how they missed Velasquez’s return to Georgia’s prison system.

Nationwide, the push to track and deport foreign criminals, especially those who are in the country illegally, has won recent backing and greater financing from Congress.

Julie Myers, the Homeland Security Department’s assistant secretary for immigration enforcement, has said targeting deportable criminals was a “top priority” for ICE. She has predicted her agency would identify and file charges against more than 200,000 inmates during this fiscal year, which ends in September. That would be triple the number from just two years ago.

In a round-table discussion with reporters earlier this year, Myers conceded her agency does not yet have a handle on how many deportable criminals are in the country. She said ICE has only a “very rough” estimate that 300,000 to 450,000 foreign citizens are incarcerated at any given time.

Her agency has focused its efforts on state and federal prisons, which are rated as high-risk for serious criminals. Myers conceded that coverage remains spotty for local and county jails. She outlined plans for computerizing immigration status information for every person booked into the nation’s jails and prisons. Implementation is more than three years away, however.

In the meantime, some localities have agreements with ICE to train local police to be partners in immigration enforcement. For the past year, Cobb County has been identifying jail inmates who are deportable. Hall and Whitfield counties recently launched a similar effort, and Gwinnett has applied to join the same program.

Such local-federal partnerships have been limited nationwide, in part because localities must pay the salaries and overtime for officers to take intensive training. And if ICE fails to move immigration detainees quickly into federal facilities, local jails can become overcrowded.

In addition, efforts to check the immigration status of those arrested for minor violations have drawn criticism.

“They should be focusing on people who have committed very serious crimes” and not traffic offenders caught by local police, said Jerry Gonzalez, executive director of the Georgia Association of Latino Elected Officials.

Advocates of reducing the immigration flow are applauding the increased enforcement efforts in prisons and jails.

“This is something that the feds have been promising for years because it’s the easiest kind of deportation to be for,” said Mark Krikorian, executive director of the Center for Immigration Studies, a Washington, D.C., based group that has long argued for tough enforcement of immigration laws

Check to see if an employer is using the E-Verify system

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Gwinnett Gazette -Talk Gwinnett: Gwinnett Cities, County Ignore State Immigration Law

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Talk Gwinnett

Gwinnett Cities, County Ignore State Immigration Law
By Bob Griggs, Publisher 06-17-2008

Almost 18 months after Georgia enacted one of the toughest illegal immigration laws in the nation, neither the county nor a single Gwinnett city has fully complied with the new requirements regarding eligibility for public benefits.

S.B. 529, enacted as the “Georgia Security and Immigration Compliance Act,” went into effect on July 1, 2007. The law requires any employer doing business with a state or local government to verify the eligibility of their new employees through the federal E-Verify system. It also defines several new crimes including trafficking a person for labor servitude, as well as requires jails and prisons to determine the legal status of all arrestees.

But it is the provision regarding eligibility for public benefits that Gwinnett’s cities and county government continue to ignore.

A Political Football Fumbled

In District 1, where the arguably largest illegal immigrant population is found, former Duluth Mayor Shirley Lasseter’s solution is to court the Feds to build a new prison in Gwinnett while challenger Carol Hassell accuses her of having practically presided over a “sanctuary city” in Duluth.

The candidates for County Commission Chairman have alternately claimed credit for the county’s immigration efforts to date and accused each other of stealing campaign promises. As the D-1 Commissioner, Lorraine Green led the push for tougher restrictions on employers holding county contracts while incumbent Charles Bannister has promised to “enact an ordinance blocking illegal immigrants from obtaining business licenses,” should he be reelected.

Bannister’s promise rings a little hollow, however, since SB-529 required the county to verify the citizenship status of business license applicants– a year-and-a-half ago…

Read the rest here.

PHOTO HERE – Military on the Mexico/Arizona border!

Posted by D.A. King at 11:28 am - Email the author   Print This Post Print This Post  


June 16, 2008

Entering the USA illegally? No problemo!

Posted by D.A. King at 9:32 pm - Email the author   Print This Post Print This Post  

Deseret News — Salt Lake City

Reports say illegal U.S. entry not difficult

Undercover investigators testing how tough it is to cross the borders into the U.S. had a better than nine-in-10 chance of pulling it off using oral assertions and counterfeit identification, according to a new U.S. Government Accountability Office report…


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