Council: Use Discretion on Immigration

At its Jan. 23, 2012 meeting, the Ann Arbor city council passed a resolution opposing federal policies that detain people and that result in deportation of immigrants who have not committed a “serious criminal offense” and who have long-standing ties to the United States. The council’s resolution supports the use of prosecutorial discretion in such cases. The resolution also calls for timely legalization of undocumented immigrants who have not committed a serious criminal offense.

Out of 10 reserved spots for public commentary at the start of the meeting, eight people signed up to address the resolution on immigration.

The council previously passed a resolution, on July 6, 2010, opposing an Arizona law that requires local law enforcement officials to investigate a person’s immigration status, when there is a reasonable suspicion that the person is in the U.S. unlawfully.

The council’s resolution passed at its Jan. 23, 2012 meeting comes after they’d heard a plea at their Dec. 5, 2011 meeting from 14-year Ann Arbor resident Lourdes Salazar Bautista, who faced deportation in late December. She was subsequently given a one-year reprieve. The council’s resolution did not address Bautista’s situation specifically.

The resolution was opposed by Jane Lumm (Ward 2) and Marcia Higgins (Ward 4).

This brief was filed from the city council’s chambers on the second floor of city hall, located at 301 E. Huron. A more detailed report will follow: [link]