Good news on the local front - sanctuary county

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For the longest time, our county - Whatcom - had been listed as being a sanctuary county where no action would be taken after receiving a request from Department of Homeland Security. Our Sheriff just corrected this today and brought to my attention the origin of that listing. From his letter:

Sheriff Elfo’s Letter To Citizens Regarding Cooperation With DHS-ICE
Earlier this month I learned from the news media that Whatcom County, along with many other counties in Washington, is listed on a federal web-site as having “enacted policies which limit cooperation Immigration and Customs Enforcement” (ICE), a component agency of the United States Department of Homeland Security (DHS). It is in the interest of public safety that the Sheriff’s Office cooperates with ICE to ensure an orderly transfer of criminal aliens to federal custody after the resolution of state charges. The Sheriff’s Office has a long history of doing just this. Whatcom County’s designation as “non-cooperative” does not reflect the practices we have adopted to ensure cooperation with ICE or a decision of a federal court within our 9th Federal Circuit Court of Appeals that set forth constitutional requirements and limitations.

And the reporting?

Last week, I requested the regional ICE “Office of Enforcement and Removal Operations” in Seattle to explain Whatcom County’s listing. After researching the matter, the acting director of the office advised me that his agents reported that the Sheriff’s Office has been fully cooperative and it appeared that the County should not have been listed as “non-cooperative.” He further explained that the decisions on county designations are made at the agency’s national headquarters in the District of Columbia on the basis of newspaper articles that followed the court decision. The acting director agreed to work to assist us in being removed from the “non-cooperating” list. However, he further indicated that many counties across the country were also voicing objections and that the issue may take some time to resolve.

So some unelected bureaucrat in the other Washington decided to list Whatcom County as a sanctuary county despite it not being so. Talk about a poor attempt at virtue signalling. Sheriff Elfo concludes his letter with the following:

I was not contacted by anyone from ICE prior to the Sheriff’s Office being included on the “non-cooperative” list. Whatcom County is not a sanctuary for criminal aliens and the Sheriff’ Office fully cooperates with ICE on the transfer of criminal aliens to the extent permitted by law. I can only conclude that the decision was made within the realm of a large bureaucracy that chose not to review the relationships, policies and practices that exist within our community to ensure public safety and cooperation or the Constitution as interpreted by a federal judge, which I took an oath to uphold.

Late on Tuesday (March 29th) I received notice from ICE that effective Sunday (April 2nd) their entire process for requesting the transfer of criminal aliens to federal custody is being revised as to scope and procedure. The new policy does not provide for the presentation of warrants but rather insists that Sheriffs accept revised detainer request forms. There was no prior discussion with Sheriffs on this process. There Prosecuting Attorney Dave McEachran is reviewing these federal changes and will provide me with advice that will help ensure adherence to the requirements of the Constitution. I will continue to work closely with ICE to effectuate public safety and the requirements of the law.

Great - we have some fantastic people working in the Sheriff's department - I have met many of them working for CERT and various radio groups and I am very glad that we have them on our side.

Again, someone coming in to improve themselves and their families are one thing - there are avenues of naturalization for them to follow. Unfortunately, about 10% of the immigrants are criminals and need to be dealt with promptly, fairly and returned to the nation of their birth, not cossetted and put on the public dole here until they commit another crime.

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This page contains a single entry by DaveH published on March 31, 2017 5:31 PM.

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