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The Rule Of Law Resolution Stands Up To Budget Mark-Up

By Greg L | 23 April 2008 | Prince William County | 35 Comments

Last evening’s grueling budget mark-up session of the Prince William Board of County Supervisors left implementation of the the Rule of Law Resolution intact while cutting about $6.7 million from the county’s budget, as was reported in the Gainesville Times.  Chairman Corey Stewart had proposed consideration about about $20 million in cuts, which would have raised average tax bills by only a fractional portion of a slice of pizza (about a single dollar, using the old method of determining the monetary value of changes in average tax bills), but as expected the straw polls among supervisors didn’t result in consensus on all of these proposals.  The current budget mark-up would establish a tax rate of $0.97 per hundred dollars of assessed value, which is awfully close to the maximum tax rate of $0.968 that Corey Stewart and John Stirrup advocated earlier in the budget process.

The fiscal conservatives on the board are clearly Corey Stewart and John Stirrup, which voted in favor of all of the cuts.  They were joined most frequently in the minority by Wally Covington and Mike May when these proposals didn’t receive majority support.  Despite the clear potential for acrimony given the significance of some of these decisions, this board meeting was pleasant and at times light-hearted, and it was a pleasure to see the board work so well together.  There was a definite desire by all of the members to develop a consensus on these proposals, and that good working relationship absolutely helped to get the board through a pretty long list of decisions in one evening.

Perhaps one of the most significant decisions was to forgo the installation of video cameras in the patrol cars of the Prince William County Police Department, for a savings of about $3.1 million.  Staff, and some supervisors were concerned that these were essential to protect officers from charges of racial profiling, and it looked like it was going to be difficult to find a solid consensus on the board regarding this item.  A discussion then started about what policy changes might be made in order to make these cameras unnecessary, which could have been an indication that the Rule of Law Resolution could be in trouble.  After a dinner break, the board went into closed session to get advice from County Attorney Ross Horton, and it became pretty clear that the Rule of Law Resolution was not going to be rescinded, since the police officers for the Criminal Alien Unit were retained, while the line item for cutting the cameras out of the budget got unanimous approval.

There are a couple of potential explanations that might fit.  One of those is that instead of subjecting all persons detained to questioning about their immigration status if there’s probable cause to do so, that some other non-arbitrary standard could be used to trigger an officer’s questioning of legal status.  The police department could come up with a list of offenses which would automatically trigger this question for all persons detained, essentially removing the probable cause issue which the county attorney is most concerned with.  If criteria are 100% related to behavior or procedure, the potential for charges of racial profiling are dramatically reduced, if not eliminated.

Another possible policy change would be to simply subject everyone to questioning, in the same manner that TSA screens everyone who gets on an airplane, regardless of whether anyone might have probable cause to think they might be a terrorist or not.  This was how the Rule of Law Resolution was originally proposed, and for a couple of reasons the Supervisors decided to change this to a probable cause standard.  If every single person encountered by the police is questioned about their legal status, then it is going to be effectively impossible for someone to claim racial profiling, even if it does create some situations where police will be questioning persons who are pretty clearly not illegal aliens solely for the purposes of satisfying a strategy of liability mitigation.

There may be other opportunities here, but these are the two that seem most likely to substantially reduce the need for video cameras in the county’s patrol cars that would also leave the Rule of Law Resolution intact, which is pretty clearly the case.  I haven’t heard what the specific changes might be that the Supervisors are considering, but it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that the concerns here are all about the probable cause standard, and there’s not a huge array of realistic options to choose from when considering a policy change.  If I’ve divined what’s going on here correctly, this discussion could result in a real benefit to the county by absolutely undercutting any thin opportunity for the illegal alien lobby to even try to sue the county.

So far this is looking like another solid defeat for the illegal alien lobby.  I can’t help but wonder if having Gaudencio Fernandez read the “honest message” from the billboard he erected on Prince William Street in Manassas didn’t help this happen in some small way.  It’s also another victory for Prince William County taxpayers, which are going to benefit from a second straight year of strong fiscal restraint by the Board of Supervisors, a welcome departure from the pattern of double-digit tax bill increases under the Connaughton board, which took away pizza after pizza from Prince William County taxpayers.



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35 Comments

  1. Vigilant1 said on 23 Apr 2008 at 12:41 pm:
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    Another possible policy change would be to simply subject everyone to questioning, in the same manner that TSA screens everyone who gets on an airplane, regardless of whether anyone might have probable cause to think they might be a terrorist or not. This was how the Rule of Law Resolution was originally proposed, and for a couple of reasons the Supervisors decided to change this to a probable cause standard. If every single person encountered by the police is questioned about their legal status, then it is going to be effectively impossible for someone to claim racial profiling, even if it does create some situations where police will be questioning persons who are pretty clearly not illegal aliens solely for the purposes of satisfying a strategy of liability mitigation.

    Absolutely nothing wrong with the above policy. EVERYONE gets treated the same and therefore no one can claim racial profiling and another “tool” is removed from the ILLEGAL APPOLOGISTS bag of tricks.

  2. Advocator said on 23 Apr 2008 at 12:42 pm:
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    A finely crafted piece of art should not have been altered.

  3. AsIseeit said on 23 Apr 2008 at 12:44 pm:
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    Well it appears that there was some give and take.
    I really am confused about Chief Dean and those Police Cameras. Other areas have had them for years,but he never asked for them.No matter the situation,they are needed as we are in different times now.

    I see the Supes did not cut from their salaries or what it takes for them to run their office or the raise for themselves. Boy are they clever.
    I got the Woodbridge Supervisors budgeted items but it wasn’t broken down much but the total is well over 400,000 ,for one District Office.
    Theres even a part time aide listed at $38,000. Wow we are in the money here that we can pay part time this kind of salary.

    While rhe average county employee,who works a full shift gets a pitance more than this.

    This seems to be lopsided and some one needs to get down to the nitty gritty and run this county as we have to run our budgets at home.

    Have a Good Day. Glad we didn’t get the Resolution Chopped away.

  4. Johnson said on 23 Apr 2008 at 3:04 pm:
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    I would be glad to address any concerns about my citizenship to any law enforcement officer. I fully support PWCPD asking EVERYONE what their immigration status is during an investigation. It really is a boost to PWCPD that cameras have not been deemed necessary up until the resolutions went into effect. I had always thought of PWC Police officers as well respected and highly professional at the street level. It highlights Deane’s rather obvious attempt to resist enforcing the resolution. I am glad that his excuse has been removed. Of course, his response to the first profiling complaint will be a chorus of “I Told You So!”. (Sung to the tune of “O solo Mio”).

    A few simple questions is all that is needed to reasonably ascertain a person’s citizenship and immigration status. The former Border Patrol, Customs Service and INS did it for decades with good results. Customs and Border Protection and the Border Patrol have been handling it since the merger in 2003. Responsible adults will carry the proper documentation to walk down the street or cross the border of the U.S.

  5. John Smith said on 23 Apr 2008 at 3:23 pm:
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    I apologize if this is a ridiculous question, but I haven’t been following this too closely.

    If there is probable cause that someone is not a citizen of the US, the police can ask that person if they are in fact a citizen (or have some kind of papers). If they do not have any documentation, what happens to them? Are they taken to jail, and then deported under ICE?

    Just wondering…

  6. Pat.Herve said on 23 Apr 2008 at 4:09 pm:
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    How do you prove your status to a police officer?

  7. Johnson said on 23 Apr 2008 at 4:09 pm:
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    John Smith-

    They are detained until they are positively identified. If they are illegally in the U.S., they will be turned over to ICE for deportation.

    Any person arrested for a crime can be held until positively identified or until released by the court.

  8. Maureen Wood said on 23 Apr 2008 at 4:23 pm:
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    Johnson- I think that some are not detained but their names are forwarded to ICE.

    Pat.Herve - ALL Foreign nationals are supposed to carry some form of paperwork with them to prove that they are here LEGALLY. If they do not have that paperwork then they are more than likely here ILLegally.

  9. floodguy said on 23 Apr 2008 at 4:31 pm:
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    Vigilante, define “encountered”? Are you talking probable cause or just encountering someone randomly? If the latter and the police are checking immigration status on everyone, regardless to whether or not they had probable cause to do so, what kind of reaction would that garnish from the public in general? How would PWC deal with that reaction, economically and politically? How would PWC deal with the associated costs of checking everyone’s immigration status, like yours if you were to walk by a police officier in Manassas Mall? What about the increased need for add’l officiers the county can’t afford to hire?

    I think that as time goes forward the policy can be made tighter, which has the affect like shaking the tree of its loose fruit. At a point in time when the remaining “fruit” is still attached to the tree, we should assume that those immigrants have some sort of documented reason to remain or are decent workers who have kept themselves employed and out of trouble with the law. If they can prove that, then I think this is where a process towards citizenship should be begin, and if the feds haven’t done anything by then, the county should begin registering them as legally desired workers.

    Disagree? Whenever the economic is poised for a turnaround, more blue-collar labor from Central America will undoubtedly be needed, so why kickout the proven and desired hardworker, the documented, and the non-criminal types who have work ethnics which keep them employed so industry does not have to retrain newbies?

    Once the process of “shaking the tree” is over, I think it is a safe assumption those remaining are more likely to desire citizenship and assimilate, and are more likely to raise good families, go to a place of worship once a week, and become productive citizens in this county.

    If the resolution simply harbored this spirit, whatever is determined by the county to a model for federal immigration reform, the illegal apologists in general would be taken out of commission.

  10. AWCheney said on 23 Apr 2008 at 5:25 pm:
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    “Whenever the economic is poised for a turnaround, more blue-collar labor from Central America will undoubtedly be needed, so why kickout the proven and desired hardworker, the documented, and the non-criminal types who have work ethnics which keep them employed so industry does not have to retrain newbies?”

    This pre-supposes that the illegal aliens are hired for their industry, and not for the low wages and lack of benefits which they can accept because the taxpayer picks up that tab.

    I was talking to an old friend of mine recently who was a long-time contractor (construction) in this area until he retired and turned the business over to his son. He was lamenting how his son has thrown away the reputation of quality that my friend had built over his lifetime because was subbing out all his work to illegal alien crews, because the developer he is working with doesn’t care about the quality of the work…just the bottom line. Then he said, “But of course he’s made himself rich doing it…”

    If contractors (and other businesses) were forced to pay competitive wages with competitive benefits they would again start hiring quality workers producing a quality product, although they might not make themselves quite as rich in the process unless they are themselves excellent business men and women. THAT’S what the American Dream is all about…rewarding industry and talent with success. Nobody said it was easy, or that just anybody can do it. Nothing truly worthwhile comes easily.

  11. Pat.Herve said on 23 Apr 2008 at 7:30 pm:
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    Maureen,

    what I mean is, what do you and I have that proves our legal status to be here in the US. I do not carry a passport around with me normally.

  12. starryflights said on 23 Apr 2008 at 7:45 pm:
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    All the police need to do, is to start with a driver’s license and ask a few questions. If the person speaks English very well, can answer a few simple questions and has a driver’s license, then no need to go further, unless something else raises an eyebrow with the police officer.

  13. Leatherneck said on 23 Apr 2008 at 7:55 pm:
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    Floodguy speaks wisely. Should I ever “encounter” a PWC cop, I would not react well to being interrogated about anything unrelated to whatever basic reason there was for the “encounter.”

    As a 30-year taxpayer, I do not favor dash cams just for PC reasons. If there are other reasons for funding this bill from my wallet, let’s hear ‘em.

    Leatherneck

  14. legal2 said on 23 Apr 2008 at 9:24 pm:
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    right on, RTM!! Another question of Deane - why did a citizen know more than you did about the federal grant to pay (approx. $1.8 million) for the cameras?

  15. NoVA Scout said on 23 Apr 2008 at 10:30 pm:
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    No way I could prove my citizenship with the papers I normally carry. You can’t base it on how well you speak American (Brits speak English quite effortlessly, but they are not necessarily US citizens or legal resident aliens. A lot of my foreign business partners speak English as well or better than I, but they have accents. The same could be said of some legal immigrants). I look a lot like a Dutchman or a Norwegian. I guess it’s the calaboose for me in PWC. At least until I can get someone to go to my house and get my passport.

    The best answer, I guess, is a national identity card. Thanks guys.

  16. Pat.Herve said on 23 Apr 2008 at 10:31 pm:
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    so, a well spoken canadian is ok?

    what about a not so well spoken Puerto Rican?

    Sorry, a drivers license is not good enough - there are plenty of them floating around, neither is speaking good english

  17. AWCheney said on 23 Apr 2008 at 10:48 pm:
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    Well NoVA, I’ve always carried my Voter Registration Card…I expect that you have one of those as well. Who knows, it might encourage more citizens to register to vote. Legal immigrants are required to carry their Green Cards. There are a multitude of forms of ID which identify whether an individual is here legally or not. Granted, many illegal aliens have phony identification…but that’s another issue.

  18. G Man said on 23 Apr 2008 at 10:48 pm:
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    Before everyone gets all excited that PWC is heading into a “police state,” let’s get some things cleared up:

    1. The police are NOT going to be checking anyone’s status UNLESS they are suspected of having also committed a crime. In other words the police will be performing their duties the same as they do now.
    2. If you are a legal citizen you will not be required to carry any additional ID then you do already. For example, your drivers license when you drive. To obtain a Virginia DLs after Jan, 2004 (I believe) you were required to show the DMV proof of legal status. So with a valid VA DL that is post Jan 2004 a police officer will know that person has legal status.
    3. Another possible check for status would be using the ICE database. If you are NOT in the ICE database, you would be considered OK. (Note: You still could be illegal, as the ICE database only contains crimimal illegal aliens, but the PWC would not detain you just for your illegal status.)

    So Hey, let’s be careful out there!

  19. Bob Wills said on 23 Apr 2008 at 10:54 pm:
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    AWCheney said on 23 Apr 2008 at 5:25 pm:

    If contractors (and other businesses) were forced to pay competitive wages with competitive benefits they would again start hiring quality workers producing a quality product, although they might not make themselves quite as rich in the process unless they are themselves excellent business men and women. THAT’S what the American Dream is all about…rewarding industry and talent with success. Nobody said it was easy, or that just anybody can do it. Nothing truly worthwhile comes easily.

    If harry home owner would not take the lowest price everytime that wanted something done then legimited business would be able to compete. The public to often buys into what they want to hear and be told and then wonder why did I get screwed ? This is true in what work they contract for as well as electing politicians.

    I am amused at you comment on “what the american Dream is all about”…

    When I brought up how the Korean Dry Cleaners Association got our BOCS as well as Fairfax and Montgomery Co to pass zoning laws that precluded Fixed Price Dry Cleaners that did not seem to matter too much to you. How can one be rewarding industry and talent with success when you local government does not play fair or by the Law?

    There is no business without customers and that is the public and when they want cheap cheap cheap you go along with it or go out of business. SPread the blame all over not to just a few.

    I would suggest that complainers like you who think that because you have a business you get rich go out and start a business that needs employees and see if you can make it or not.

  20. AWCheney said on 23 Apr 2008 at 11:06 pm:
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    If you recall, Mr. Willis, I suggested that you take your obsession with dry cleaners to an “Open Thread.” I didn’t see anything regarding your issue there, or anyplace else where it would be more appropriate.

  21. Floodguy said on 23 Apr 2008 at 11:11 pm:
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    AWC said “This pre-supposes that the illegal aliens are hired for their industry, and not for the low wages and lack of benefits which they can accept because the taxpayer picks up that tab.”

    The county and/or the fed will charge the immigrant for the legal documented status. This is turn will increase the value of the laborer’s worth. The county and/or the fed will raise corp taxes to fund the cost for the guest worker program. These economic forces combined with tightening control of labor away from illegal, inexpensive and excessive, will raise wages and raise the price for goods produced by companies which employ legal immigrants.

    Had this type of reform been in place prior to the county’s housing boom labor supply would not have been so plentiful and so inexpensive; houses would not have been so plentiful, large and inexpensive; inflated property values would have not occurred and inappropriate lending practices would not have been imagined; the rate of growth would have moderated, and control of expansion would have been more manageable.

    Instead we have the opposite. This has to change and if nothing is implemented, the penalty of inaction will continue to weigh heavily on the county’s finances for the coming years while it tries to weather a macro-economic slowdown with mounting inflationary pressure.

    Without further reform, the slew of foreclosures strangling neighborhoods will remain vacant with no buyers and no tenants. The revenue stream of taxes from these homes will be a drag on the county’s ability to shake itself from its financial problems.

    Soon additionally problems associated with these vacant homes will further burden citizens and the county. Unsightly lawns, graffiti, loitering and vandalism amongst a few other issues, will be a topic in the coming months.

    In my opinion immigration policy in this county needs additional reform. Our county supervisors should strive for a policy, which should symbolize what federal policy should become. Once the tree is shaken of all its loose fruit, the county needs to enact a guest worker program to legalize those how remain who are employed and have no record.

    The reality is the immigrant laborer is every bit part of the equation to this county’s well-being as you and I are. For a county poised to grow, a population of legal hardworking immigrants is a sign of a healthy county economy. PWC isn’t going to grow without them. Obviously we should want the cream of the crop, the hardworking, law abiding, family-oriented, and God-fearing immigrant, just like our ancestors were, or for some, like how our parents are and/or how our grandparents were. PWC is one of the few places taking the lead on immigration reform. We have first crack at getting the best available, so in the course of our efforts, let us ensure the county does not accidentally repel the best, leaving us with sloppy seconds.

  22. Bob Wills said on 24 Apr 2008 at 12:42 am:
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    AWCheney said on 23 Apr 2008 at 11:06 pm:
    If you recall, Mr. Willis, I suggested that you take your obsession with dry cleaners to an “Open Thread.” I didn’t see anything regarding your issue there, or anyplace else where it would be more appropriate.

    You are the one who brought up the ” American Dream” and that Dream is being violated by the laws passed by our county BOCS. I do not subscribe to some times the law applies and some times it does not. This immigration problem is all about the Rule of Law but it does not seem to matter when the BOCS want to have a double standard on matters. I believe in equal application of law and not a special application of law and rights. Having spent years in courts over the violations of individual rights and wining I have a much better understanding of how two faced our government can be and is. When politicians tell you how rigious they are and have a double standard I can be far more obesessed then you can immagin. It is very simple ,treat everyone the same and then there is nothing to be “obsessed “as you call it.

  23. es_la_ley said on 24 Apr 2008 at 7:19 am:
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    Supervisor calls for end to Prince William crackdown

    http://www.wtop.com/?nid=730&sid=1392004

  24. Benton said on 24 Apr 2008 at 7:46 am:
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    AW - assume you will report your friends son to the authorities or at least to the IRS? Or have you already?

  25. Freedom said on 24 Apr 2008 at 8:05 am:
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    Floodguy, I strenuously disagree with the concept of a “guest worker” program. For years, Europe has had “guest workers.” They are treated with disgust by citizens of the host-country and while they must work for the money, they are neither happy nor committed to their work.

    If we need more labor and/or population growth, we currently have a process to accommodate that — it’s called “immigration.” While the groundrules of that policy may require modification from time-to-time, to meet the American need, without a doubt, that is doable. People who wish to live and work in this country should be willing to commit themselves to this country and become Americans — “guests” are not necessary.

  26. Freedom said on 24 Apr 2008 at 8:24 am:
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    Well Nova Scout and Pat.Herve….I’m not the least bit worried about my American citizenship being questioned. However, if you’re really, really worried, one thing you could do is carry a little “bag of essentials” along with you, wherever you went…you know, tooth paste, tooth brush, a pad of paper and a pencil. At least, you’d be prepared.

  27. Washington DC Born said on 24 Apr 2008 at 8:40 am:
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    Pat.Herve said on 23 Apr 2008 at 7:30 pm:
    Maureen,

    what I mean is, what do you and I have that proves our legal status to be here in the US. I do not carry a passport around with me normally

    Lose your purse or wallet and all your ID. It is hard to say the least to prove legal status. I know that for a fact as one that happened to. Could not get my license re-issued by DMV because in the process of contacting the bank, credit card companies, etc my license expired. DMV would not accept my certificate of live birth and my original SS card as proof that I had legal status. I brought employee records, 1040 and still could not get my driver’s license. The thing that really ticked me was they had a photo of me in their system that matched my face. All the info they had matched what I had provided but still no license. I had to contact my high school for transcripts. I have been out of school for 25 years. What DMV failed to tell me was I could not open them when I received them or they would not be accepted. Thank God the school secretary told me. What the hell does a school transcript prove. It only proves I went to school in the US.

  28. Johnson said on 24 Apr 2008 at 10:37 am:
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    Washington DC Born said-

    Me, too! Columbia Hospital for Women. I think that the DC Borns are few and far between. Was it VA DMV that you had trouble with? They accepted my birth certificate at my last renewal in 2006. You’re right, they are very @^@! about documentation. I am a Fed and I thought WE were bad.

    Yes, non-citizens are required by federal immigration statute to carry their documents, be it a green card or a passport.

    I’m glad to see that most people are responsible about carrying credible I.D. and are knowlegable about different forms of I.D. A police officer will look at what you have for I.D. and make a decision based on the totality of the circumstances. For example, a VA DL, voter registration card and a Social Security card are easily verifiable and would suffice for me in the course of my duties. Of course, the more I.D. you have, the better. Most people have an employer issued I.D. with a picture on it. If you put all of that together with matching credit/debit cards, insurance cards, etc., it becomes pretty obvious that after a brief scrutiny of documents that a person is who they claim to be.

    I know it sounds silly, but how many of us have watched “Cops” and seen that very often, criminals have no I.D. with them? It’s because thay are criminals and do not want to be identified. Same with illegal aliens.

    REAL ID is the answer to all of this, of course.

  29. Bob Wills said on 24 Apr 2008 at 11:35 am:
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    The Va DMV is just about the worst people in all to deal with and too often those on the counter need English classes. This problem is also at the counters of too many government offices including PWC. One place you can go for just about anything other then a licence is to City Revenue offices where they have a DMV office and little or no wait and people who know what they are doing and give you the right answer the first time. Of course proving you existed other then standing in front of the person was a problem in W VA years ago. there were no birth certificates available for there was a fire at the State Capital and all the birth records were destroyed. In order to get a new birth certificate there were people around the state who could certify to your birthing and that would allow you to prove you existed :))))

  30. floodguy said on 24 Apr 2008 at 12:50 pm:
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    Freedom said on 24 Apr 2008 at 8:05 am:
    Floodguy, I strenuously disagree with the concept of a “guest worker” program…

    If we need more labor and/or population growth, we currently have a process to accommodate that — it’s called “immigration.”

    —————————————————————————–

    Freedom, I thought a guest worker program with terms leading towards citizenship was immigration. Renewable legal status every 4 years, based on certain criteria, such as proof of employment past, present and future, proof of taxation payments, no convictions of a felony or more than two misdemeanors, language tests, etc.

    Should changes become warranted due to fluctuations in our economy affecting labor, permits can be readily denied, approved or renewed based on overall economic needs and occupation, while screening the applicant’s ability to meet the stated criteria.

    This sort of control by our federal, state and/or local authorities, can be used to manage labor more efficiently, softening the spikes and drops in our labor pool, curtailing under the counter cash payment of illegal labor by business while reducing unemployment of those who are legally here. This is a piece to the puzzle, which leads to efficient expansion of our communities when economic opportunities present themselves.

    The worker program can be used in conjunction with standard rules of immigration should not be viewed by the opponents of reform as being harsh, discriminatory or pro-nativist. A guest worker program better manages an establish need for immigration and labor to the benefit of the migrant, and to the nation (or county) in as a whole.

    On the flip side, this should not be viewed as being lax or inefficient, because the intent is to raise the standard favoring hard-work law-abiding immigration, while rewarding this behavior with a path toward citizenship, if desired. It allows government to weed out those who cannot stay out of trouble, or those who are reasonably able but do not hold reasonable standards of employment. This lays the groundwork for a future full of productive citizens, who are more capable of building families and more equipped to raise good kids who will better understand what is important to advance society.

    I’m suggesting immigration reform in PWC needs not only remove those elements which do not fit this mold as it now does, but it should also state its desire to maintain those who do, and encourages more hardworking non-criminal migrant laborers to come when the economic conditions call for it. Enforcement of the “rule of law” of detained criminal suspects needs to expand to landlords and businesses, which also violate the law.

  31. Michael said on 24 Apr 2008 at 9:31 pm:
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    Outstanding! Thank you our board of supervisors for having the wisdom and the character to preserve this much needed rule of law resolution!

  32. AWCheney said on 24 Apr 2008 at 10:18 pm:
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    “I’m suggesting immigration reform in PWC needs not only remove those elements which do not fit this mold as it now does, but it should also state its desire to maintain those who do, and encourages more hardworking non-criminal migrant laborers to come when the economic conditions call for it.”

    First of all, floodguy, “immigration reform” is not within the powers of a local government. Enforcing the existing laws, and local ordinances regarding overcrowding, business licenses and the like are about all that localities are able to do regarding this matter. You either enforce the law equally among all…or you don’t enforce it at all (like before the Resolution). If you want reform, let’s clean up the immediate problem, close the borders, and THEN address reform.

  33. AWCheney said on 24 Apr 2008 at 10:20 pm:
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    Oh yes, I forgot to add…that immigration reform can ONLY be addressed at the Federal level.

  34. freedom said on 26 Apr 2008 at 10:21 am:
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    …and that’s exactly where it should be addressed, AWC. My response was intended for those who are so concerned that we just won’t have the laborers to do the work if the illegal aliens should pack up and leave.

    …and no, Floodguy, there is no need for a “guest worker” program (those who don’t want to be Americans, but want to work in this country) as an avenue to citizenship — why enslave to low salaries and virtually no opportunity, those who need to make a little money to send back home. The Federal government can and should simply adjust the immigration quotas as appropriate to our need and route the new citizens to locations where employment in their field is plentiful..

    How difficult is that? If this were happening today, the new immigrant citizens would be met with open arms, would be helped endlessly in their efforts to become even better Americans, and would NOT represent a class doomed forever to the bottom rung of our economic ladder.

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