Georgia Law Creates Volunteer Panel for Immigration Enforcement

A board of volunteers selected by Georgia’s Governor will have the power to issue $5,000 fines to state mayors, county commissioners and business license clerks if they do not comply with the state’s recently passed immigration reform law, according to Bloomberg.

The Immigration Enforcement Review Board, the first of its kind in the nation, was created as part Georgia’s immigration law, which took effect on July 1. Its members will be appointed by Governor Nathan Deal, Lieutenant Governor Casey Cagle and David Ralton, the speaker of the state House of Representatives, the media outlet reports. Members will not be paid, and there are reportedly no eligibility standards.

The review board will investigate complaints from registered voters about public officials’ failure to use either the federal E-Verify system or the federal Systematic Alien Verification Entitlements database. If the board finds a violation, it will have the authority to issue $5,000 fines, cut funding for local governments or remove their eligibility for state-sponsored funding and programs.

Georgia’s immigration reform legislation, which was signed into law in May, contains a slew of provisions aimed at apprehending undocumented workers and preventing illegal immigration into the state. The law requires businesses to check the citizenship status of potential employees on the federal E-Verify system, among other changes.