34 St. & Loc. L. News 1 (2010-2011)

handle is hein.journals/stlolane34 and id is 1 raw text is: IIIN  Section of State and Local Government Law

Jhe Section serves as a collegialforumfor its members, the profession, and the public to provide leadership and educational resources in
urban, state, and local government law andpolicy.

Illegal Entry? State and Local Governments
Step intothe IllegalImmigration Quagmire
By H. Lawrence Hoyt

ewspaper headlines, talk radio shows, and the nightly
news all brought attention to Arizona's decision this
summer to address illegal immigration itself-not
waiting for Congress or the Administration to reform
the federal immigration laws. The recent entry by state
and local governments, against a backdrop of changing
federal law and expectations, illustrates the challenges and
confusing pattern of federal mandates and has resulted in
significant litigation.
Immigration Control Before 1996
Before 1996, the only express federal invitation to state and
local authorities to become involved in immigration control
was via the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986
(IRCA), Pub. L. No. 99-603, 100 Stat. 3359 (1986) (codi-
fied as amended at Immigration and Nationality Act (INA)
 274A-274B, employer sanctions provisions codified at
8 U.S.C.  1324a-c (2000)).' That invitation was circum-
scribed: state and local law enforcement agents were autho-
rized to enforce the criminal provisions of the Immigration
and Naturalization Act, subject to the limitations of the
state's laws and constitutional due process requirementS2;
but, more importantly, all employers, including states and
local governments themselves, were required to review eli-
gibility for employment through the Form 1-9 process. See
IRCA, 8 U.S.C.  1324a(b).3
But the perceived failure of the federal government
to adequately prevent, or swiftly remedy, the unlawful
HLawrence Hoyt serves as the
Boulder County, Colorado, Attorney,
civil counselfor the county govern-
ment. Hoyt chairs the Section's
Diversity Committee. He would like
to gratefuily acknowledge the assistance
ofJacyn Hamilton, paralegal in the
Boulder County Attorneyi Office, in
the preparation ofthis article.

presence in the United States of foreigners had begun to
take a financial toll on states before 1996. In California,
always a harbinger of popular trends and issues, the voters
approved Proposition 187 (the Save Our State initiative)
in November 1994. Placed on the statewide ballot by citi-
zen initiative, this measure attempted to ban the provision
of public services and benefits, including public education,
non-emergency health care, cash, and other public assis-
tance, to illegal aliens, and would have required state and
contract service agencies to report persons seeking assis-
tance who could not verify their lawful presence to police
agencies and the California Attorney General. Although
Proposition 187 never took effect because of injunctive
relief granted by a federal district court, it did serve to
raise this issue on the public stage and send a message to
Congress that there was a problem, real or perceived, with
the unlawful presence of individuals in the United States.4
Limited Federal Invitation for
State/Local Government Involvement
In 1996, Congress responded to pressure from California's
Proposition 187, as well as mounting public sentiment
about the alleged abuses of the federal public welfare
(continued on page 10)
* Chair's essage: Thank You, Donna Pugh, page3
Section News: Connecting Law Students to the
Practice of Law, page 2
* Stop the Beach Renourishment-What Does It Mean,
page 4
* he Book Corner. Homeland Security and E mer gency
Management-A Legal Guide for State and Local
Governments, page 6
*Supreme Court Watch: Otis McDonald H ad a Gun,
page 7

Vol. 34, No. 1, Fall 2010

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