Vitter Offers Anti-Sanctuary Cities Amendment to CJS Appropriations Bill
U.S. Sen. David Vitter today offered an amendment to the U.S. Senate Commerce, Justice and Science Appropriations Bill that instructs the Department of Justice to withhold federal Community Oriented Policing Services funding from sanctuary cities.
"This summer's immigration debate showed the American people want Congress to get serious about securing our borders and curtailing the epidemic of illegal immigration. One key way to do that is by requiring our cities to actually enforce our immigration laws currently on the books to the fullest extent," said Vitter.
Vitter's amendment would withhold COPS federal funding for cities that violate the 1996 Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act. The IIRIRA requires local governments to cooperate with Department of Homeland Security's Immigration and Customs Enforcement, but instead many cities have defied the law and have adopted "sanctuary policies" to protect illegal aliens from enforcement. Cities that practice sanctuary policies instruct city employees not to notify the federal government of the presence of illegal aliens living in their communities.
"Some of our largest cities practice sanctuary policies that protect and provide assistance to illegal aliens. My amendment instructs DOJ to withhold federal policing funds from those cities that continue their sanctuary city policies," added Vitter.
The U.S. Department of Justice's COPS Office awards grants to state and local law enforcement agencies to advance community policing.
A similar amendment passed the U.S. House of Representatives during debate on the Commerce, Justice and Science Appropriations Bill.