9 hours ago
Tuesday, August 08, 2006
If it ain't broke don't fix it
Hazleton Mayor Lou Barletta's immigration ordinance has inspired some copycat proposals in other towns. Now the little Luzerne County hamlet of Forty Fort, with almost no minority polulation let alone an immigrant problem, is set to pass a law that addresses a problem that doesn't exist. From what I read in the CV today was a frustration of one local official with the unwillingness of the Bush administration to enforce the immigration laws already on the books.
Councilman Dave Williams said the proposal was created because the federal government has failed to act against illegal immigration, which he called "a disease that's festering in this country. " However, Williams said hasn'tasn't noticed a growing illegal immigrant population in the borough.
"Do we have what I perceive to be a huge illegal immigration problem? No," he said....."Maybe finally, the federal government will get off their lazy buns and do something."
There are a few people in the town that realize this is foolish.
Councilman Andy Tuzinski said he is not advocating the proposal and is "neutral" on the issue. He said council needs to focus more on rental inspections and problems between landlords and tenants in general.
Mayor Boyd Hoats Jr. said he has yet to examine the details of the proposal, but remained skeptical. "To be honest, I'm not really for it," Hoats said
Williams and Tuzinski said council President Joseph Chacke voiced concern about possibly having to defend the ordinance against lawsuits. They said Chacke suggested postponing action to see how Hazleton's proposal survives legal criticism for prempting pre-empting federal immigration laws or violating federal civil rights legislation.