Santa Cruz Sheriff Says He’ll Work with Governor and Ammiano

Santa Cruz County Sheriff-Coroner Phil Wowak said Friday there won’t be immediate changes to how the county handles inmates eligible to be deported under a controversial immigration program, and that future changes are likely to come as part of a broader shift across California. Wowak made the comments after state Attorney General Kamala Harris this week told local jailers that compliance with the Justice Department’s Se Communities program was optional. So far, thousands of illegal immigrants nationwide have been plucked from local jails and sent back to their native country under the 4-year-old program, many without facing serious charges. “Our goal is to get a consistent approach rather than individual interpretations and individual responses from different counties,” Wowak said Friday after returning from an Oakland meeting of the California State Sheriffs’ Association, where Harris’ bulletin was discussed. Wowak stressed that the state’s top cop’s carries no legal weig

Los Angeles sheriff to stop turning over low-level offenders to immigration

The Los Angeles County sheriff will no longer honor federal requests to detain suspected illegal immigrants nabbed for low-level crimes like petty theft and graffiti after new state guidelines noted the practice is voluntary, a spokesman said on Wednesday. Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca announced the change a day after California’s attorney general issued a directive, welcomed by immigration activists, that compliance with the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement detention requests was discretionary. Attorney General Kamala Harris is the highest state official so far to join a handful of dissenting authorities in major U.S. cities who oppose a cooperation program between immigration agents and local law enforcement known as “Se Communities. A spokesman for Baca, who has in the past supported federal immigration requests, said new guidelines were being written and would likely come into effect by the end o

Intentan de nuevo Acta de Confianza

El asambleísta demócrata de San Francisco, Tom Ammiano, pharm no perdió tiempo y en el primer día del ciclo legislativo 2012-13, que inició ayer, reintrodujo el Acta de Confianza, que busca poner fin al impacto negativo en California del programa federal llamado Comunidades Seguras (S-Comm). El nuevo proyecto de ley tiene el mismo objetivo que la medida vetada en septiembre por el gobernador Jerry Brown, la cual busca establecer una norma general para que los gobiernos locales no detengan a un individuo a petición del Servicio de Migración y Aduanas (ICE) a menos que tenga una condena seria o violenta. Esta norma prevendría la detención prolongada de personas indocumentadas que serían dejadas en libertad si no fuera porque hay una petición de ICE. Los detalles de cómo quedará la versión final del Acta de Confianza y de la diferencia que tendrá con la medida vetada saldrán de las pláticas con el equipo de trabajo del gobernador y la gente de Ammiano, según se dijo ayer.

Dos propuestas de ley buscan favorecer a indocumentados en California

Dos propuestas de ley buscan en el primer día del nuevo periodo legislativo de California otorgar licencias de conducir a todos los conductores y limitar la remisión de indocumentados detenidos las autoridades de Inmigración. Un proyecto del asambleísta Luis Alejo (D-28), en conjunto con el asambleísta Tom Ammiano (D-13) y el senador Kevin de León (D-22), argumenta la seguridad como razón principal para otorgar licencias de conducción a todos los conductores sin importar su estatus migratorio. Ammiano también reintrodujo hoy la propuesta “TRUST Act” (Acta de Confianza), que busca mitigar el supuesto impacto negativo del programa federal Comunidades Seguras que permite la colaboración entre agencias locales de control de la ley y autoridades de Inmigración. “Los inmigrantes y los votantes latinos enviaron al gobernador, (Jerry) Brown, y a la nueva Legislatura un mandato muy claro: trabajen en soluciones que tengan sentido, condúzcanos como una familia unida y reconozcan la dignidad..

TRUST Act Reintroduced to Dem supermajority in Sacramento

And Assm. Tom Ammiano and several co-sponsors have reintroduced the Trust Act, banning local law enforcement from turning over illegal immigrants to the feds for possible deportation if their crime is relatively minor. “We must make sure that Se Communities focuses on violent and hardened criminals, not on day laborers, not domestic workers,” said State Senator Kevin DeLeon (D-Los Angeles). Republicans will have little say. “Our role will be, hopefully, partnering with the press. We will help shine a light on what’s going on in the government,” said California Senate Minority Leader Bob Huff (R-Diamond Bar). But Democrats believe voters gave them a mandate to get things done. Senator Noreen Evans (D-Santa Rosa) says: “I think the biggest danger is that we would move too cautiously and not address the problems that California has been facing. California voters have demanded that we govern and that’s what we intend to do.”

TRUST Act Reintroduced to Dem supermajority in Sacramento

And Assm. Tom Ammiano and several co-sponsors have reintroduced the Trust Act, banning local law enforcement from turning over illegal immigrants to the feds for possible deportation if their crime is relatively minor. “We must make sure that Se Communities focuses on violent and hardened criminals, not on day laborers, not domestic workers,” said State Senator Kevin DeLeon (D-Los Angeles). Republicans will have little say. “Our role will be, hopefully, partnering with the press. We will help shine a light on what’s going on in the government,” said California Senate Minority Leader Bob Huff (R-Diamond Bar). But Democrats believe voters gave them a mandate to get things done. Senator Noreen Evans (D-Santa Rosa) says: “I think the biggest danger is that we would move too cautiously and not address the problems that California has been facing. California voters have demanded that we govern and that’s what we intend to do.”

TRUST Act to be reintroduced 2 months after Gov. Brown vetoed it

A San Francisco state lawmaker plans to introduce a revised version of the TRUST Act, the measure that would restrict the ability of law enforcement agencies in California from enforcing federal immigration laws. Governor Brown vetoed the original bill in September. San Francisco Assemblyman Tom Ammiano (D-San Francisco) intends to unveil the new Trust Act on Monday. His office has not yet said what revisions have been made. Activists have billed the TRUST Act as an “anti-Arizona” law aimed at keeping undocumented immigrants arrested for minor offenses from being turned over to immigration officials for deportation. The proposed law was intended to counter the federal Se Communities program, which shares law enforcement fingerprint data with the FBI and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). It would require local police to release people who have been arrested once  bond is posted, as long as they have no serious convictions.

Far fewer illegal immigrants turned over to feds

The net cast for illegal immigrants in Sonoma County shrank dramatically in the past year — with far fewer people turned over to the federal government for being in the country without permission. The reasons for that change are hard to pinpoint. But it corresponds chronologically to a decision that local law enforcement agencies — urged on by advocates for illegal immigrants’ rights — made last year to accept Mexican consular cards as valid identification. That meant officers in the field who were confident of the identity of a person they contacted could check them against records, and did not always have to take that person to jail to find out if they were wanted or otherwise posed a threat. Since the new policy took effect, local authorities have turned over just under half as many people as they previously did to Immigration and Customs Enforcement under the federal agency’s Se Communities program, according to data the agency provided.

Critics say immigration program detains less serious offenders

The chief goal of the federal Se Communities program, in place in Sonoma County since March 2010, is to identify, detain and deport dangerous illegal immigrants. But since the program took effect, critics have said that it actually catches up as many, if not more, people guilty of offenses that most consider minor, such as driving without a license or lifting. Such was the case of Jacobo Farias-Chavez of Santa Rosa, who was pulled over for a traffic violation. Sonoma County advocates for illegal immigrants’ rights are heartened by a steep drop in the number of people handed over to immigration authorities, a drop coinciding with local police agencies’ decisions to accept Mexican consular cards as valid identification.

Federal illegal immigration strategy shifting – Crime/Safety – NewsObserver.com

Federal officials are scaling back a program that enlists the aid of local police and sheriff’s offices to identify people who are in the country illegally, pharm in favor of a national program that uses fingerprints collected by the FBI. U.S. Immigrations Customs and Enforcement officials say the so-called 287(g) program that includes Wake County will continue at least until the end of the year. But ICE says the program is under review, order and that it will no longer train local police under the program or give them the authority to question, investigate and arrest people they suspect are in the country illegally. The change moves the government away from an approach to immigration enforcement that has been popular among some law enforcement agencies but has drawn fire from civil rights groups, who say it encourages local police and sheriff’s deputies to unfairly target Latinos. The Department of Homeland Security is still reviewing 57 complaints against the Wake County program