AUSTIN (CBSDFW.COM) – State senators gave preliminary approval to a ban on sanctuary cities. Senate Bill 4 went up for a vote in Austin today.
Senator Charles Perry of Lubbock introduced the bill that if approved in the House will deny state grant money to cities, counties and college campuses that refuse federal requests to hand over immigrants already in custody for possible deportation.
Perry said he proposed the bill because local officials were refusing to cooperate with U.S. Customs and Immigration Enforcement.
The legislation would also allow local district attorneys to decide whether or not to file a misdemeanor charge against any public official who violates the potential law.
While the republican majority state legislature pushed through the anti-sanctuary city legislation, Dallas County Commissioners are welcoming undocumented immigrants.
In a 4 to 1 vote commissioners passed the “Welcoming Communities” resolution Tuesday calling for local law enforcement to stop all “non-essential” collaborations with immigration authorities. The motion essentially means police officers should not ask individuals about their immigration status.
The process to pass Senate Bill 4 was sped up sine Governor Greg Abbott labeled it an “emergency item”.
The bill, which had stalled in previous years, cleared the GOP dominated legislature and comes as President Donald Trump issues executive actions on immigration and continues to push for the building of a border wall between the U.S. and Mexico.
The bill must now clear in the state House before becoming law.
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