March 27, 2008

Changes to RI Immigration Policies

Carroll Andrew Morse

Ray Henry of the Associated Press has a preview of the changes to immigration policy that Governor Donald Carcieri plans to announce today…

Gov. Don Carcieri plans to sign an executive order Thursday forcing prison officials and state police to identify illegal immigrants in state custody and requiring that state agencies take other steps to penalize immigration violators, a lawmaker said Wednesday....

A written statement from Carcieri's office said there is a growing number of illegal immigrants, and the federal government is not taking action. It said the Republican governor will also endorse legislation that has been introduced in the Democratic-dominated General Assembly that will accomplish the same goal.

Among other steps, Carcieri will require the state Department of Corrections and state police to identify and report illegal immigrants in their custody, said Rep. Joseph Trillo, who said he has discussed the proposal with Carcieri's staff. Once state law enforcement identifies illegal immigrants, they can alert federal immigration authorities to begin deportation proceedings....

Carcieri has also been considering proposals that would affect employers.

A Carcieri staffer recently told Rep. Jon Brien that the governor planned to sign an executive order forcing state agencies and contractors to verify the legal status of their workers, Brien said. The Democratic lawmaker had asked Carcieri to support a bill requiring private employers to do the same.

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We must be in Looking Glass Land-when I retired 11 years ago as an INS agent we routinely identified both illegal and legal aliens(whose crimes subjected them to deportation proceedings)in state custody,both pre-trial and post sentence and we had the Institutional Hearing Program,where Immigration Judges attached to the Executive Office of Immigration Review based in Boston held hearings on a regular basis at the ACI and issued Orders of Deportation which were executed immediately upon completion of sentence.
The INS also routinely arrested both illegal and legal aliens with serious convictions at their homes and places of employment based upon regular reviews of the records of the Dept of Probation and Parole.This highly successful proactive program was initiated around 1984 and resulted in well over 1500 apprehensions by the time I left the agency.
My question is-what happened?Did ICE regress purposely,or as a shift of resources post-911?I don't know,but the boneheaded move to combine INS enforcement and Customs investigations was definitly not helpful,as neither agency had much investigative crossover with the other previously.The inspections functions at airports and land and sea ports of entry were also combined,but that made a great deal of sense because of the de facto interchangeability of duties that already existed.

Posted by: joe bernstein at March 27, 2008 11:47 AM

No doubt the legal challenges will come but this is very necessary. This issue needs to be forced so legal rulings can guide locals on how to deal with these invaders.
Btw an amusing side note. The governor's office is rolling out their framework of this executive order through the AP and not the local Projo? Think they finally 'got it' in the gov's office? lol So enjoyed reading this fine agenda free reporting on the Boston Globe website.
Nice job Mr. Robitaille. Very nice!
Hoping this is the beginning of the governor's office complete and total phase out of the Projo. That sad excuse for a newspaper writes pure fiction and needs to pay a price for their journalistic illegitimacy.
Wondering why is Charlie Bakst so mad?
Methinks Charlie knows he's already been phased out. lol

Posted by: Tim at March 27, 2008 12:01 PM

M. Charles Backstabber, that guy should retire.

Posted by: Citizen Critic at March 27, 2008 1:43 PM

"My question is-what happened?Did ICE regress purposely,or as a shift of resources post-911?"

Great question, Joe. From what I've read, this let-up on enforcement had started well before 9/11/01 - so, initiated under Clinton and unfortunately continued under Bush.

During that time, advocates of illegal immigration have attempted to shift the parameters of what constitutes reasonable border and immigration enforcement efforts so that very basic initiatives such as the Governor's can be framed negatively.

In the process, they have endangered our sovereignty and grossly contorted the definition of treasured concepts like human rights and civil rights. They have also exposed illegal immigrants to exploitation, both in the process of arriving and once here, and demonstrated considerable disrespect to those immigrants who followed our procedures to come here.

Posted by: Monique at March 27, 2008 9:07 PM

Monique-I have a dvd where I was addressing a group of people on this subject-the probelms really started under the Carter administration,but I was referring to what has happened post-911 when the reorganization under the aegis of Homeland Security took place-there seems to be a regression,both in terms of efficiency and effectiveness and it can't be blamed on liberals,because they haven't been calling the shots on this-the Bush administration has been a joke regarding immigration law enforcement-the emphasis is on show raids and the sense of individual initiative to accomplish the mission at local level has been eradicated,and been replaced by a hidebound bureaucracy worse than ever before-a lot of the good cases I made in the past wouldn't see the light of day under the present conditions-almost all my friends have retired as soon as they could-can you imagine why?I don't see a better future in this regard no matter who wins,although McCain will be less of a disaster vis a vis immigration issues.

Posted by: joe bernstein at March 27, 2008 9:49 PM


Know your a big fan of Chuckie Bakst. lol Apparently the Governator ripped him a brand spanking news rectum yesterday. Messed him up but good! Hoping someone will air the highlights.

Posted by: Tim at March 28, 2008 8:03 AM

What needs to be done is to hunt down the parents of anchor babies through the public schools and DHS. You notice the governor won't go near that. This is just cosmetic fluff.

Posted by: Mike at March 28, 2008 8:40 AM

What NEEDS to be done is a reversal of the "Anchor Baby" law.

Posted by: Greg at March 28, 2008 8:56 AM

Say what you want about Merrill C. Bakst, but he hit in right on the head when he said Carcieri forfeited his right to proclaim himself a reformer when he put Steve Kass on the state payrol, and then in a cushy job at a huge raise.
Government for talk talk radio.

Posted by: rhody at March 28, 2008 11:14 AM

As a State employee in a large Human Service agency in RI and retired US Army soldier I have very strong concerns for the direction we are heading. Even though cuts in State government threaten my career, they are necessary. With that, so too is it necessary to explore other burdens on State government.

I have said time and time again, RI is the smallest state and therefore should be the example and leader not just for illegal immigration studies, but illegal / fraudulent public assistance and waiting periods to establish RI residency, not just US residency, to be eligible to receive State Public Assistance.

My theory is simple. If we make a modest family income of $85,000 per year with no children to support, we try to donate to church and other charities. Perhaps $3,000 to $4,000 per year or more, in good times. In hard times we reduce that charity to $1,000 to $2,000 per year. The same has to happen with the State of RI. We cannot afford to take care of everyone. We need a 12 to 18 month (min.) waiting period for anyone that is not a RI resident to receive any public benefit from the State. This deterrent, combined with other reduction of expenses should contribute greatly to reducing the budget deficit.

We should also give the companies that hire illegals a one-time amnesty which would include a workforce shift. By this I mean, you get caught as a company, the State would waive the penalties if that company replaced the illegal workforce with citizens that are on public assistance or unemployed. The company would be allowed under this State program to continue to pay the $5 per hour (if that was the rate it paid the illegal worker) and not be subject to possible future health care legislation for any worker hired under this program. Can you imagine the offset to our public assistance programs if these private companies were paying the $5 hour x 8 hours per day x 40 hours per week portion? Then multiply by the number of workers yielded (potentially) by the "shift".

The Executive Order is an emergency mechanism. The RI Assembly now needs to pass more detailed immigration legislation, which would include the Governor's Order and also target those areas that cost the State government the most money - first. The waiting period should be a first step. Remember - this would be for ANYONE, not just illegals.

Finally, when the word "illegal immigrant" is used, let's not forget the countless Yugoslav, Asian, African, and many other White / European and former Soviet block illegal immigrants. I never once saw the word "Hispanic" or "Latino" in the Executive Order or any other targeted format where the term "illegal immigrant" was used in potential lawmaking.

Good Luck Governor --
Ron Sanda - Sergeant First Class
US Army Reserve (Retired)

Posted by: Ron Sanda at April 5, 2008 10:12 AM
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