States Welcome Undocumented
In what appears to be the first statewide measure of its kind, Governor John Baldacci of Maine issued an Executive Order prohibiting state employees from inquiring about immigration status. The genesis of the policy is in an armed ICE raid of Portland, Maine locations frequented by immigrants which caused an outcry. As ICE steps up its efforts to locate and deport undocumented aliens, the backlash against enforcement will grow and other states will be spurred to follow Maine's lead. e.g. Florida Governor Bush's proposal for issuing driver's licenses to the undocumented in Florida. This backlash is an unintended consequence of increased ICE enforcement. The Governors of Maine and Florida are undoubtedly strong supporters of anti-terrorism efforts. However, they have the wisdom to realize that current enforcement policy appears broadly directed at undocumented dishwashers, gardeners, etc and not narrowly targeted at those who wish America ill. Immigration law's role in anti-terrorism is a very small one; federal enforcers who ignore this will, in fact, lay the foundation for more actions such as Maine's.
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International Aspects Of Criminal Immigration Enforcement
Michael Surgalla and Arthur Norton write "In recent years, the fight against organized
international alien smuggling has emerged as a national law enforcement priority."
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Immigration Law News
4th Circuit Upholds BIA's AWO Procedure
In Belbruno v. Ashcroft, No. 02-2142 (4th Cir. Mar. 29, 2004), the court said that the BIA's streamlining regulations did not violate an alien's rights to due process. The court said that "judicial review, not judicial micromanagement of BIA procedures" was the proper response to Petitioner's concerns about the AWO.
Federal Immigration Statute Does Not Preempt State Licensing Authority Hierarchy For Immigration Law Practice
In Gadda v. Ashcroft, No. 02-15113 (9th Cir. Apr. 1, 2004), the court said that the Supreme Court of California discipline orders may serve as the basis for reciprocal disbarment action by both the BIA and the 9th Circuit. The court also noted, "Because we have jurisdiction over appeals from the
immigration courts, the quality of the practice by attorneys
appearing before the immigration courts is crucial to our ability
to administer justice and function effectively. The quality
of our review is heavily dependent on the record established
in administrative immigration hearings, which in turn is
dependent on the competence of the attorneys creating that
Maine Governor Signs First Statewide Executive Order Prohibiting Immigration Status Inquiry
The Portland Press Herald reports "Gov. John Baldacci signed an executive order Friday prohibiting state employees who provide public services from asking about a person's immigration status. The new policy mirrors those adopted by a number of cities across the country, including Portland, but it appears to be the first statewide measure of its kind in the nation."
Gov. Bush's Driver's License Proposal For Undocumented Draws Support
The Southwest Florida News-Press reports "[Many] agree with Gov. Jeb Bush's endorsement of a Senate bill that would grant two-year licenses to undocumented immigrants."
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Immigration Law Conference
The Center for Migration Studies, in association with the Fordham School of Law will present the 27th Annual National Legal Conference on Immigration and Refugee Policy – "Navigating Through the Immigration Labyrinth in Post-9/11 America" on May 25-26, 2004 in New York City. The conference will consist of presentations + Q&A sessions on a wide-range of immigration topics. Immigration professionals, government officials, HR professionals, and non-profit reps should not miss the chance to hear noted experts in the field speak. Participants will have the rare opportunity to interact with key policymakers at this unique international event. Topics will include the transition to the DHS, including the impact of both policy and process, as well as an overview of business, family, and asylum issues facing the immigration law and policy community. For more info, including detailed curriculum, speaker line-up, and registration information, visit: http://www.cmsny.org/27th-annual.htm.
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Letters to the Editor
Someone keeps asking for PERM to make Balca decisions more precedent setting. I
believe that the original formulation of PERM eliminates the need for BALCA altogether.
If anyone ever objected to the original rulemaking, the information was
never passed along by DOL. They should still have to
open up PERM for public objections at a time close to enactment, and this
is something we should object to. It appears that the only thing open to
appeal in the PERM system is prevailing wage. This will mean that
anyone and everyone connected with the DOL can make up their
own concept of what is an adequate test of the labor market, a restrictive
requirement, etc. and there will be no way to object, let alone any
precedent. Does anyone have any ideas on how to open a dialogue, as
this would seem to be a significant loss of due process rights. Speedy
decisions are only valuable when other rights are retained.
The following case, National Collegiate Recreation Services d/b/a American Hospitality Academy v. Powell, Secretary of State, et al. Civil Action No. 9:02-2676-23 (District of South Carolina, Beaufort Division, Mar. 23, 2004, where the court awarded Petitioner's application for attorneys fees and costs pursuant ($188,000+) to the Equal Access To Justice Act may be of interest to Immigration Daily readers. The case concerns an employment agency using J-1s and a DOS audit of the agency which was resolved in the agency's favor.
Laura Foote Reiff
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