April 18, 2009
Immigration raid led to detention of 28 people in Washington state
Raid was first of its kind under the new Obama administration
Homeland security chief says she was unaware of raid, ordered investigation
Foes of illegal immigration angry about “de facto amnesty” for freed detainees
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Illegal aliens detained, then freed to work
Bellingham, Wash. — After 11 years of living illegally in the United States, it was not until Gerardo Arreola Gonzalez was nearly deported that he finally received permission to work here. — Arreola was one of 28 illegal immigrant workers arrested in February after agents from ICE raided a car engine repair business…
If Perdue signs bill, immigration laws will tighten
By MARY LOU PICKEL
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Saturday, April 18, 2009
Georgia’s crackdown on illegal immigration will continue if Gov. Sonny Perdue signs into law a measure approved by the General Assembly requiring more jail checks that could lead to deportation.
• Summary of immigration-related legislation
“That is a deterrent, in and of itself, to people coming into Georgia or remaining here illegally,” said D.A. King, president of the Dustin Inman Society, a Marietta-based anti-illegal immigration group, and a supporter of the legislation.
The measure, House Bill 2, updates sections of the Georgia Security and Immigration Compliance Act of 2006, a comprehensive crackdown on illegal immigration in Georgia. It is awaiting Perdue’s signature.
Georgia law already requires jailers to check legal status and report any illegal immigrants charged with a felony, DUI or driving without a license. Under House Bill 2, jailers also would be required to alert federal agents when they encounter an illegal immigrant charged with misdemeanors of a “high and aggravated nature.”
In addition, the bill requires that public employers and contractors use a federal database to verify that new hires are not illegal immigrants, and that those who receive public benefits — from welfare to a business license — are in the U.S. legally. Local governments that don’t comply could lose state road-building money, the measure says. ( note from D.A. – not exactly)
Jerry Gonzalez, head of the Georgia Association of Latino Elected Officials, called the bill a waste of time. Gonzalez said immigration is a federal issue that should be resolved by Congress, not at the state level. President Barack Obama is expected to address immigration reform this year.
“The bottom line is that immigration reform is coming,” Gonzalez said.
Terry Norris, executive vice president of the Georgia Sheriffs’ Association, called it another unfunded mandate.
“Most sheriffs do not have the resources to enforce immigration law,” Norris said. He added, however, that sheriffs will comply with the law.
Gwinnett County Sheriff Butch Conway says the new requirements will add to booking times.
“Anything that adds to the process slows us down,” Conway said.
Gwinnett booked about 13,000 foreign-born inmates last year. Between 30 percent and 45 percent could be illegal immigrants, Conway said.
During a monthlong intensive “blitz” in February, federal agents scoured the Gwinnett jail and flagged 915 inmates for deportation.
Conway has applied for a federal program — known as 287(g) — that would train his deputies to cooperate with federal immigration agents and start deportation paperwork on any illegal immigrant booked into the jail, no matter what the charge. It would mean more work for the Sheriff’s Office, but Conway has said he would devote 18 deputies to the program if the federal government approves it.
Cobb, Hall and Whitfield counties now run such programs at their jails.
Conway said he expects that when a new immigration jail opens in Gainesville this summer, federal officials will approve Gwinnett for the 287(g) program. The new jail would create enough bed space to house the expected increase in deportees from Gwinnett and other areas, Conway said.
Outcome of immigration-related bills in this year’s Legislature
H.B. 2: Broadens conditions for jailers to check the legal status of inmates, could lead to more deportations. Also, requires all government employers to use the federal E-Verify database to check the legal status of new hires. Requires governments to use the federal SAVE database to check legal status of those seeking public benefits. Governments could lose state road-building dollars if they don’t. ( Note from D.A. – not exactly)
S.B. 86: Requires proof of citizenship to register to vote.
S.B. 20: Prohibits local governments from establishing “sanctuary policies.” Requires local officials to cooperate with federal agents to report immigration status. Threatens withholding of state dollars for non-compliance.
Failed: ( Note from D.A.- these bills are still alive for next year)
S.B. 67: English-only driver’s license tests.
S.B. 136: Rapid deportation from state prisons.
Want business license in Cherokee? Swear you’re legal
Atlanta Journal Constitution
Cherokee County has become the latest metro county to keep business licenses limited to legal residents.
Last Monday, the county began requiring applicants for business licenses and renewals to sign an affidavit, saying they are in the U.S. legally.
At least two other jurisdictions — Cobb and Gwinnett — have imposed similar requirements based on the Georgia Security and Immigration Compliance Act. That law, which was passed by the state Legislature in 2006, prohibits taxpayer funds from going to illegal workers.
Buzz Ahrens, chairman of the Cherokee County Commission, said the county didn’t have much option.
“The state Legislature said it would cut off all funding if we didn’t do it,” he said.
Elise Shore, regional counsel with the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund, said not all legal experts agree that the law was meant to apply to business licenses.
Like the state law, “this is trying to send a message to the immigrant community that they’re not welcome,” Shore said.
She said the mandate of the affidavit also creates
“a more regulatory environment, a more difficult environment for businesses.”
D.A. King, a Marietta opponent of illegal immigration, applauded Cherokee’s decision to “partially” comply with the 2006 law by requiring the affidavit.
“I hope they will do all that is necessary to gain full compliance,” said King, who sued Cobb County in 2008 before the county started requiring business license applicants to show they are legal residents.
Cherokee County issues about 7,500 business licenses each year. But only a handful of businesspeople made application last week and had to sign the affidavit, which requires them to verify that they are a U.S. citizen, legal permanent resident 18 or older, a qualified alien or non-immigrant under the Federal Immigration and Nationality Act.
Ana Silbernagel, who supervises the issuance of those licenses, said no one raised an eyebrow.
“We haven’t had any kind of response either way,” she said.
Late last year, Cherokee commissioners reopened the local illegal immigration debate with a draft ordinance that would make renters prove they’re here legally and threatened the business licenses of companies with undocumented workers.
Opponents and supporters packed one public hearing, but, since then, commissioners have taken no action and have said the ordinance remains “under review.”
April 17, 2009
Report: IRS paid $7B in tax credits to many here illegally
The IRS allowed foreign workers – many of them in the U.S. illegally – to improperly claim nearly $7 billion in child tax credits from 2004 to 2007, a government investigator said Thursday. — Most of the credits went to workers who didn’t make enough money to pay any federal income taxes… [
Read this recent item from the ethnic-hustler mob known as MALDEF]
AJC, September 7, 2001
Constitution Home Edition
OUR OPINIONS: Bush, Fox should pursue union similar to Europe
Mexican President Vicente Fox envisions a North American economic alliance that will make the border between the United States and Mexico as unrestricted as the one between Tennessee and Georgia.
Though neither Fox nor President Bush expects to dissolve the 2000-mile border overnight, the Mexican leader clearly prefers sooner rather than later. In Washington this week, Fox surprised his friend and fellow rancher president by calling for sweeping American immigration reform by year’s end.
Currently, U.S. government immigration policy echoes its position on gays in the military: Don’t ask, don’t tell. The nation essentially winks at the estimated 3 million illegal Mexican immigrants toiling in fields, poultry plants and construction sites. If America cracked down and rounded up all those workers, the nation’s agricultural and construction industries would collapse, says Jagdish Sheth, Emory University’s Kellstadt professor of marketing.
Despite American dependence on their labor, undocumented workers still live in the shadows and under threat of deportation, and Fox is right to insist that Mexicans working, paying taxes and obeying the law have ”all their legal rights when they’re living here in the United States.”
Those rights don’t have to spring from legal residency. Some sort of temporary guest worker visas stand a better chance with congressional conservatives than the blanket amnesty suggested last month by the White House. Opponents shot down that trial balloon before it even cleared the tree tops.
In the short-term and during this country’s economic downturn, Bush ought to concentrate on a work permit program that concedes the need for Mexican workers but imposes controls to stem illegal crossings. By loosening border restrictions, Mexicans may eventually return to their homeland, a journey that now entails too many perils. Reflecting the new policy of encouraging citizens to return, Fox said Thursday, “We need you to come home one day and play a part in building a strong Mexico.”
The United States also must play a part in sustaining Mexico’s economic growth. “For marginal workers, leaving his or her country is not an easy proposition. It is not a lark. It is a risky, dangerous proposition, ” says Juan M. Del Aguila, an Emory University associate professor of political studies. “If we can create incentives for them to stay in their own country, many of these potential immigrants would.”
In boom states like Georgia, it’s been painless to absorb Mexican immigrants. But in the unlikely scenario that the economy hits the skids, migrant labor — whether illegally coming from Mexico or legally from rural Alabama — could snatch jobs away from the local unskilled labor pool.
The ultimate goal of any White House policy ought to be a North American economic and political alliance similar in scope and ambition to the European Union. Unlike the varied landscapes and cultures of European Union members, the United States, Canada and Mexico already share a great deal in common, and language is not as great a barrier. President Bush, for example, is quite comfortable with the blended Mexican-Anglo culture forged in the border states of Texas, California and Arizona.
Of the three North American players, the United States clearly holds the place of dominance. By joining with its neighbors to the north and south, the United States would have the strongest voice in coordinating fiscal, energy and drug enforcement polices that affect the continent.
An erroneous public perception exists that Mexico would be the main beneficiary of a U.S.-Mexico partnership. In the aftermath of the 8-year-old North American Free Trade Agreement, Mexico has become the third-largest importer of Georgia products, $1.2 billion worth of goods last year. Mexico is the United States’ second-largest trading partner.
“Fundamentally, our economic integration with Mexico is inevitable, ” says Emory’s Sheth. “Out of nowhere, Mexico has become a $200 billion a year trade partner. We think that will grow to $500 billion.”
“If you look at the European process, not all countries benefit equally all the time, ” says Del Aguila. “But the commonwealth as a whole has improved, the standard of living has risen.”
Historically, immigration has enriched America culturally and economically, as demonstrated most recently by the Cubans in South Florida. The challenge with Mexico is to better manage the natural flow of a people who are not only America’s fastest-growing immigrant group, but also its closest neighbors.
“Our choice is to fight it and lose, ” says Georgia State University economics professor David Sjoquist, “or embrace it and all come out better for it.”
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Los Angeles Times
California jobless rate soars
California’s unemployment rate hit 11.2% with the loss of 62,100 jobs last month, reaching its highest level since the government began keeping systematic records in 1976, the U.S. Department of Labor reported today. — a percentage point from a revised…
Storm Lake (Iowa) Pilot Tribune
King: Obama immigrant policies walking a ‘dangerous path’
“The Obama Administration has shut down worksite enforcement, effectively suspending law enforcement on employers who are hiring illegals. They have shifted the focus from intercepting illegal drugs and people coming from Mexico to intercepting legal U.S. guns on their way to Mexico. Now the Obama Administration has come out in support of amnesty for law breakers,” US Rep. Steve King says.
April 16, 2009
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MALDEF Strongly Encourages Millions of Working Latinos to File for the Federal Earned Income Tax Credit
APRIL 13, 2009 – It is not too late to benefit from the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), a significant tax break available to U.S. citizens and legal immigrants alike. This important tax credit is often overlooked and sadly millions of qualified Latinos miss the opportunity to take advantage of billions of dollars in valuable benefits. The EITC is an effective way to improve the financial situation of people who work but earn low wages, and has no effect on determining eligibility for Medicaid, Supplemental Security Income, food stamps, low-income housing, or most Temporary Assistance for Needy Families payments.
Even if you paid no federal income tax you may be entitled to receive up to $4,824. To find out quickly if you qualify, please go to www.IRS.gov/eitc, to use the online guide which provides a worksheet to help you estimate your credit amount. If you meet the qualifying test, fill out the 1040 or 1040A form and file, or for families with children, fill out the EIC form and file it with your 1040 or 1040A form.
Also, please be aware that if you earned less than $56,000, you qualify to use the IRS free file system. With this you can download tax software to prepare and file a simple return. Go to www.IRS.gov and click on the free-file system. If you prefer to meet with someone in person, and you earned $42,000 or less, you can also take advantage of free help from Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Centers in schools and community centers nationwide with Spanish speaking volunteers. You can also call the IRS and schedule a free appointment to file your income tax return. To find a VITA Center near you or to schedule an appointment with someone there or with an IRS agent, please call 1-800-829-1040 and ask for Individual Accounts. You can also acquire all forms at the public library or post office.
If you have used an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN), and now have a social security number, you can go back three years and amend your returns using your social security number to receive EITC and maybe even other credits you now qualify for. Unfortunately, a lot of people forget to amend their taxes once they get their social security number and lose out on that money. In these difficult economic times, every dollar helps,so if you have earned it, please claim it!
This MALDEF Latino Financial Empowerment message is sponsored by the Annie E. Casey Foundation. For more information please go to www.annie.e.caseyfoundation.org.
Founded in 1968, MALDEF, the nation’s leading Latino legal organization, promotes and protects the rights of Latinos through litigation, advocacy, community education and outreach, leadership development, and higher education scholarships. For more information, visit www.maldef.org.
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Millions of Tax Returns Will be Filed Fraudulently: Earned Income Tax Credit is Used by Illegals and Scam Artists to Get Undeserved Monies
—NOTE FROM D.A. -See HERE for info on EITC:
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