Cobb County to join voluntary immigration enforcement program

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ATLANTA — A suburban Atlanta county is on the verge of becoming the first local government in Georgia to join a voluntary federal immigration enforcement program that aims to make sure all employees are in the country legally and eligible to work.

Cobb County Commission members plan to sign an agreement Tuesday with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement to participate in the IMAGE program.

Though nearly 300 businesses nationwide have joined the recently revamped program, only a handful of municipalities across the country have done so.

Several municipal governments have turned out for the ICE Mutual Agreement between Government and Employers information and training sessions, and ICE said it expects to see more of them sign up for the program, said Brock Nicholson, the head of the agency’s Atlanta field office.

“It benefits them like it does any corporation or business,” he said. “It helps them work towards ensuring that our workforce is a legal workforce.”

Federal officials say the program can reduce the employment of illegal immigrants and the use of fake identification documents.

Cobb County has previously taken a tough approach on illegal immigration. Its sheriff’s department is one of four in the state that participate in a local-federal partnership that allows specially trained local deputies to enforce federal immigration law.

County Commissioner Bob Ott, who pushed for the county to join the program, said this isn’t about getting people deported.

“It’s all about jobs for the folks in Georgia and Cobb County,” he said. “It really comes down to just making sure that the limited number of jobs that are out there are going to the people that are entitled to have them.”

To participate, employers must meet several requirements: enroll in the federal E-Verify program; submit to an ICE audit of their I-9 forms that new employees complete and related documents; establish a written hiring and employment verification policy that includes a yearly internal audit; and sign a partnership agreement with ICE.

The Association County Commissioners of Georgia has generally opposed state-level legislation that places the burden of verifying employment eligibility on local governments, but associate legislative director Todd Edwards said the association doesn’t oppose local governments taking such action.

Georgia law already requires public employers, including local governments, and their contractors to verify the legal work status of their employees using the E-Verify database.

Contractors must provide sworn statements to the government saying they have run the checks.

But Cobb County has had problems in the past. Some workers on the construction of a new county courthouse in 2010 turned out to be illegal immigrants. It was determined that a subcontractor wasn’t checking workers’ eligibility as required.

While county participation in the new program would not have caught that problem, Ott says his goal is for the county to do business only with program-certified contractors.

The fulfillment of that goal is likely a long way off. Fewer than 300 companies nationwide are currently certified or have signed agreements with ICE to go through the certification process.

“It’s not something that’s going to happen overnight,” Ott said. “But the message it sends out is the county is going to be serious about making sure that we’re going to try to get the jobs to people that are entitled to have them.”

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itsanotherday1 05/18/12 - 03:33 pm

CSRA and other Metro Atlanta counties should get on board forthwith.

Willow Bailey
Willow Bailey 05/18/12 - 06:07 pm
happen overnight,” Ott said.

happen overnight,” Ott said. “But the message it sends out is the county is going to be serious about making sure that we’re going to try to get the jobs to people that are entitled to have them.”

Cool, the government doing their own job. Can't wait to hear the plan for getting the labor force fixed?

Brittanicus 05/18/12 - 08:58 pm
Illegal aliens on welfare costs billions?

In this climate of reducing illegal immigration, one of the most urgent laws to our countries financial survival, is to revisit the Birthright citizenship law. Presently anybody who can steal into this sovereign nation across the northern or southern border with an unborn child and settle here? Then can immediately gain citizenship for the child, opening the door for the whole immediate family and an abundance of special free privileges, This is not oriented to just illegal border crossers, but pregnant females who has the price of airline ticket, to impersonate as a visitor or other tourist, so they can take advantage of the welfare system in America. Just this week the Census Bureau announced that children, by racial and ethnic minorities make up more than half the children born in the U.S., capping decades of massive immigration growth that is now slowing. Those white people are not having children, unlike people of other nationalities. Most Americans with a Social Security number cannot meet the expense of a baby, let alone two, three or four or even five, that foreigners seem to conceive, specific in this current economy and especially under the Obama administration, as they unable to afford the expense of delivery or bringing up the child.

Whereas, migrants and illegal alien pay nothing for any of the prenatal services as it’s all free; Compliments of the unsuspecting taxpayer. Americans who have property, possessions and other assets are liable for hospital services with a $6.000 dollar bill to contend with, while a foreign national walks in, get free treatment for whatever that ails them and walks out free of any payment. Afterwards the U.S. citizen or any legal resident is hounded by debt collectors who have a range of possibilities, to force you to pay the bills, including dragging you to court.

The majority of thinking Americans have no trouble that is aware of costs for every foreign baby born here? Just ask the most welcoming state. The sanctuary state of California is now carrying the huge burden of $16 billion dollars, because of the strain allotting public assistance to every illegal alien who reaches the state of refuge. Los Angeles Supervisor Michael D. Antonovich website states that an illegal immigration costs $550 million for public safety and nearly $500 million for healthcare, a total cost to County taxpayers that exceeds $1.6 billion dollars a year and doesn't include the billions more in education. California, the epitome of a Sanctuary states will be the epicenter as millions of absconding aliens arrive there, from less benevolent states? Unfortunately left wing Governor Jerry (moonbeam) Brown is now preaching more taxes, cuts in benefits—when removing the millions of foreign national could save the state from this perfect financial storm.

The 14th amendment governing citizenship must be changed and although there are at this time over 87 sponsors to (H.R.140) Birthright citizenship bill, there it sits in limbo. Pressure groups are adverse to any amendment to this law and downright lying about the law has detrimental results. That not granting automatic citizenship to anyone and everyone born on U.S. soil would cost taxpayers money? The Center for Immigration Studies (CIS) repudiates claims made by a high-immigration group that ending Birthright Citizenship would cost U.S. taxpayers billions of dollars per year. The argument is the National Foundation for American Policy early this year released a new report alleging that ending Birthright Citizenship would create a new "baby tax" for all U.S. citizens, create a second-class society, decrease income tax revenues for the federal government, and cause children born to illegal aliens to become stateless. Jon Feere, a legal policy analyst for the Center for Immigration Studies, challenges every point set forth by the National Foundation for American Policy's report and says, "Supporters of the status quo understand that history is not on their side and have resorted to scare tactics to discourage discussion about the subject."

The claim that not granting citizenship to children born to illegal aliens would contribute to a growing population of illegal aliens. Feere argues that if immigration laws are enforced and illegal aliens are deported, they won't give birth to children in the United States. The fact that this happens in the first place has nothing to do with our birthright citizenship law, but rather lack of enforcement at the federal level. Another claim is CLAIM: Newborns born to illegal-alien parents will be stateless. Mr. Feere says this claim from the National Foundation for American Policy is flat-out false. Children born to illegal-alien parents in the United States are citizens of their parents' home country. A child born to parents from Mexico will receive Mexican citizenship. CLAIM: Children of illegal-alien parents will work in an underground economy. Feere says the United States can prevent illegal-alien children from entering an underground economy in two ways. First, the federal government can enforce immigration laws and deport illegal aliens, and second, Congress can pass an E-Verify law, requiring all employers to use E-Verify and imposing heavy fines on companies that participate in an underground economy.

Regardless of the lies in Leftist media reports, the U.S. Supreme Court has never ruled on whether or not children born to illegal-alien parents, or to parents visiting the United States with temporary visas, are entitled to birthright citizenship. Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa) has introduced the Birthright Citizenship Act of 2011 that would:
Eliminate the practice of Birthright Citizenship by requiring at least one parent of children born in the United States to be a U.S. citizen or legal permanent resident.

Birthright citizenship for illegal aliens not only encourage illegal immigration and adds to the population growth, it also acts as a “foothold” for illegal-alien family members to remain in the United States and eventually legalize their status.

You want to change Washington for the better, then find a local TEA PARTY and join? If you trust the doctrines of the U.S. Constitution, then find your place with the TEA PARTY to unseat all the politicians, governors, Mayors and other officials that are still ruining your life through tax and spend. Both political parties have been irresponsible at enforcing the border or interior enforcement. The TEA PARTY will rescind and punish all those responsible for Sanctuary cities, state Dream Acts and denounce any chance of Comprehensive Immigration reform or Amnesty from passing. It’s absolutely unfair when special interest groups including the leaders of religions are inviting illegal nationals to live in the United States, when they stand financially free and clear and leave the American taxpayer to cover all costs.

Our country has been neglected for years, occupied by illegal immigrants and hordes of criminals. Mitt Romney better not turn on the massive TEA PARTY on this issue, or they will realize he cannot be trusted. Americans haven’t learned that you cannot get something for nothing. Half of this country’s population lives off the other half’s income and that is why our social safety nets are failing. The last realistic chance we have of getting out of our financial mess is to remove the old members of Congress and state capitals, with Tea Party leaders. It happened in Indiana when Senator Richard Lugar was retired, replaced by a Tea Party lawmaker. The TP demands is a urgent need for a unprejudiced tax code with no subsidies, loopholes for corporations, industry or anybody else; an end of bureaucratic tricks to stop drilling on public lands or coastal waters with its massive deposits of oil, natural gas, that can ease our need for foreign imports and begin the Canadian oil pipeline to Texas. Lessen the out-of-control 16 trillion dollar deficit. TP is for a balanced budget amendment and an end to the massive U.S. treasury deficit. Make obsolete the Department of education and return the power to states, communities and parents for better educational performance. Downsize the Environmental Protection Agency and reverse the many of the unnecessary regulations that is crushing entrepreneur and small business opportunities. No more government bail outs for the friends of the Oval Office, no more ‘cronyism’ to Wall Street and an end to massive spending by Obama’s Czars. Introduce a waste and reduction law, which begins the process of shrinking the size of government.

Want more facts, and then investigate American Patrol and NumbersUSA web sites.

We must also promote mandatory (E-verify H.R. 2885) that needs to be the policy of this country? If E-Verify is enacted the mass exodus of millions of foreign nationals will begin, as they will be unable to find a job and it will discourage the annual influx of more foreigners into the country. Because of this fiasco of our Immigration laws business owners are directly responsible for the growing amount of $113 Billion dollars in public welfare programs.

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