Initiative language OK’d on enforcing migrant law

Monica Alonzo-Dunsmoor, Arizona Republic, July 27, 2006

Phoenix—City officials Wednesday approved the ballot language for a proposed initiative that asks voters whether they want city officials, including police officers, to enforce federal immigration laws.

The measure has not yet been certified to appear on the November ballot, but the City Council had to meet a Wednesday deadline to submit the ballot information to the county.

“It doesn’t mean it’s a final thing,” City Clerk Mario Paniagua said. His office has until Aug. 3 to verify if there are at least 14,844 valid signatures in support of the initiative.

Randy Pullen, leading a group called Protect our City, submitted more than 21,000 signatures for the measure. Pullen was also the main proponent of Proposition 200. That voter-approved measure aims to restrict certain public benefits to undocumented immigrants.

If the proposal qualifies for the ballot, voters will consider a proposition that:

• Would “require all officials, agencies, and personnel of the city of Phoenix, including the Phoenix Police Department, to cooperate with and assist federal immigration authorities in enforcing immigration laws within the boundaries of the city.”

• States that “no official, personnel or agent of the city . . . will be prohibited or in any way restricted from sending, receiving, or maintaining information regarding the immigration status, lawful or unlawful, of any individual, or exchanging such information with any other federal, state or local government entity.”

• Would require Phoenix to “enter into an agreement with the United States Department of Homeland Security to designate police officers as immigration officers qualified to investigate, apprehend, and detain aliens in the United States.”

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