WASHINGTON - The Center for Immigration Studies (CIS) released a new memorandum finding that the Department of Justice, under the direction of the Obama administration, awarded millions of dollars in grants to local governments in 2010 to compensate for the cost of incarcerating illegal immigrants, even when those governments have policies in deliberate defiance of immigration law enforcement. Following the release of this new report, Rep. Gary Miller released the following statement:
“While I have been a stalwart advocate of fully reimbursing state and local governments for the cost of jailing illegal immigrants, it is wrong to give SCAAP funds to sanctuary cities. Why should we reimburse sanctuary cities for incarcerating illegal immigrants when they deliberately prevent their police officers from cooperating with ICE agents?
“In its lawsuit challenging the Arizona immigration law, the Obama administration claims that the law creates a patchwork of immigration enforcement. If this is the case, then the Obama administration should also sue sanctuary cities, for their policies are arguably a ‘patchwork’ of immigration enforcement as well. It is time for the administration to end its double standard.
“Rather than award limited SCAAP funds to those that make a mockery of our nation’s immigration laws, I believe these funds should only be allocated to those local law enforcement agencies that cooperate with the federal government, namely jurisdictions that participate in 287(g) and Secure Communities. To this extent, I have authored legislation – the LEAVE Act – that would prohibit sanctuary cities from receiving both DOJ and DHS funds. I hope the next Congress will take up this commonsense proposal and penalize sanctuary cities for their irresponsible policies.”
ABOUT SCAAP: The State Criminal Alien Assistance Program (SCAAP) is a program which reimburses states for the costs of incarcerating undocumented criminal aliens. Under the law that created SCAAP, the federal government is required to take all criminal aliens into federal custody. If that is not possible, which has been the case since the program was created, the law calls for compensation of state and local government incarceration costs. The grant program doled out a total of $400 million to about 850 cities, counties, and states in 2010. Among them were 27 jurisdictions widely considered to be sanctuary jurisdictions, which together received more than $62.6 million, or 15.6 percent of the total.