The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors voted Tuesday to join a brief filed in a Texas federal court in support of President Barack Obama’s executive actions on immigration.
Supervisors Michael Antonovich and Don Knabe cast the dissenting votes, with Antonovich raising concerns about creating an “unfunded mandate” to provide benefits to people living in the country illegally.
Supervisor Hilda Solis urged her colleagues to sign on, saying the county needed to make its voice heard.
The orders could “potentially assist 40,000 children, lifting them out of poverty in the state,” Solis said. More than 15,000 of those children live in Los Angeles County, she said. The executive actions — the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals and Deferred Action for Parents of American and Lawful Permanent Residents — would defer deportation for nearly half a million Los Angeles County residents.
In December, the state of Texas filed a lawsuit challenging the president’s authority, and the day before the executive actions were set to take effect in January, a federal judge announced an injunction halting the programs.
Community advocates spoke out today in support of the proposed immigration changes.
“These are programs that will keep families together,” said Apolonio Morales, political director for the Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles. “Families with dreams and aspirations to succeed .. given the chance, they will.”
Antonovich argued that a work permit program would be a better solution to the country’s immigration issues.
“There ought to be a work permit system that allows people to come to work … but not to have them entitled to all of the social benefits because those costs are borne by the entire city, county, educational institutions, and these are unfunded mandates that the state does not have the resources to continue to provide,” Antonovich said.
A spokeswoman for FWD.us, an immigration advocacy group co-founded by Facebook CEO and tech billionaire Mark Zuckerberg, told the board that the DACA and DAPA programs would allow immigrants “to come out of the shadows” and urged that they be allowed to move forward as soon as possible.
The “friend of the court” or amicus brief was filed in January by the U.S. Conference of Mayors, the National League of Cities and 33 cities, including the city of Los Angeles.
Last month, the Board of Supervisors agreed to set up a task force to prepare for implementation of the executive actions.
— City News Service
>> Want to read more stories like this? Get our Free Daily Newsletters Here!Follow us: