Mississippi’s proposed immigration bill was effectively killed by the state’s Judiciary B Committee Chairman, Hob Bryan, who chose not to bring up the controversial agenda before its April 3 deadline.
Bryan told The Associated Press that he decided to leave the bill out of the Senate because it had too many examples of micromanagement in it.
“We would be telling local policemen how they should behave when they arrest somebody. We would be telling sheriff’s deputies what they should do when they arrest somebody,” Bryan said. “And I just don’t think that’s a proper role for the Legislature.”
House Bill 488, as it was called, would require all law enforcement officers to check the immigration status of anyone they thought looked suspicious. For every person they arrested for not having proper immigration forms, officers would have to report the incident to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Those officers who did not report these arrests would be fined $5,000 per day by the ICE.
Upset by the decision to kill the bill, several members from the House of Representatives are attempting to keep parts of the bill by adding them to a counterfeit goods bill that is currently up for discussion, stated the AP.
However, many local businesses, residents, and immigration advocates are happy with the decision to kill the bill. Many believe that the personal pleas and accounts from law enforcement and business leaders in the state were persuasive enough to terminate House Bill 488. Several sectors of the agricultural industry, one of Mississippi’s largest sources of commerce, opposed the bill, including the Mississippi Farm Bureau and the Mississippi Poultry Association, according to Immigration Works.