At long last, we know what the Senate’s tougher immigration crackdown bill may look like.
Sen. JD Alexander’s strike-all amendment to SB 2040 proposes taking away the burden of checking a person’s immigration status from employers, who would no longer be required to use the federal government’s e-Verify system or any other alternative on prospective hires.
The state, however, will have to use e-Verify on any public benefits applications, including on people looking through work in person at Florida’s workforce agencies.
And instead of checking a person’s immigration status after a conviction, Alexander’s amendment puts forth running a check after a person is arrested and booked. That could be troubling for law enforcement; police officers have said they fear such measures could deter undocumented immigrants from reporting crimes –- particularly when it comes to domestic violence.
Though he has not read Sen. Rene Garcia’s proposed changes to the bill, Alexander said after a budget meeting Tuesday morning that he would not support punishing businesses for hiring undocumented immigrants.