By Adam Ashton
Schools and state-owned buildings would be off-limits to federal immigration agents under a California bill that would force officers to get warrants before they visit public sites for surveillance or arrests.
Sen. Ricardo Lara, D-Bell Gardens, submitted the bill last week, three days after President Donald Trump announced that he would end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program that protects some young immigrants from deportation. He plans to move it forward in January, after the end of the current legislative session.
“Courthouses, schools and other state offices are a refuge for millions of the most vulnerable Californians, and immigrants should not be afraid to come to court or take their children to school,” Lara said in a written statement.
He submitted the new amendments to Senate Bill 183 on Friday, replacing a bill that would have helped Native American tribes obtain exemptions from marine mammal protection laws. SB 183 asserts that the presence of immigration agents at public buildings deters residents from paying fines, reporting crimes or cooperating with state investigations.