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Immigration revamp passes House, Senate

Georgia is now one step away from having a very aggressive immigration law.

In the last day of the legislative session Thursday, the Georgia House and Senate agreed to the legislation pushed by Peachtree City Republican Rep. Matt Ramsey.

Ramsey said he is confident the bill will win the signature of Gov. Nathan Deal, but there has been some public backlash against the bill and Deal is sure to face some political heat before making his decision.

The heart of the bill is aimed at keeping illegal immigrants from gaining employment, as it requires all businesses with 10 or more employees to use a computer network run by the federal government to check a job applicant’s immigration status.

The bill also retained a provision allowing law enforcement officers to check the immigration status of anyone who is being investigated for a crime, including misdemeanors and traffic stops. Current Georgia law allows immigration checks only for those charged with committing a felony offense.

The law will allow law enforcement to report any illegal immigrants to the federal government, but the truth is that Immigrations and Customs Enforcement currently is only deporting immigrants accused of felonies.

The bill also is aimed at withholding public tax “benefits” from being spent on illegal immigrants, a whole laundry list of items ranging from housing assistance to a dental license, Ramsey said.

Georgia, however — by federal law — cannot deny access to K-12 schools and also emergency medical care to illegal immigrants, he noted.

“This immigration bill we think it the strongest and most aggressive in the country,” Ramsey said. “It is Constitutional. We are very proud of the product and we think it’s just a great day for Georgia.”

The requirement for Georgia businesses to participate in the federal government’s E-Verify system starts in nine months for the largest companies in the state, with a staggered requirement date for the remaining companies based on their size, Ramsey said.

Businesses must swear in an annual affidavit that they are using E-Verify in order to qualify for a locally-issued business license or tax occupation certificate, Ramsey said.

That means that each city and county in Georgia will be keeping track of those affidavits, and any business found to not be participating in E-Verify after submitting said affidavit can be prosecuted for perjury or false swearing, Ramsey said.

A business that fails to submit such an affidavit may not be issued a business license or occupational tax certificate, Ramsey said.

One concession in the bill, forged by the Senate, was the creation of a study on the U.S. guest worker program by the Georgia Department of Agriculture to provide recommendations for usability improvements to the federal government, Ramsey said.

Ramsey credited passage of the bill to the cooperation between the leadership of the House and the Senate.

“We got almost everything we wanted, and every bit of the important pieces of the bill remained intact,” Ramsey said.

Also passing Thursday night on the final day of the legislative session was Ramsey’s interstate insurance bill, which would remove entanglements so insurance companies can offer the same plan in Georgia that they do in neighboring states.

Ramsey said this will help drive down the cost of health insurance for Georgia residents.

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Comments

Now Georgia may join the states that can legally question any citizen with a brown or yellow skin and a foreign accent. <strong>(There are Citizens with these attributes)</strong>. Some of us who have adopted children who don't 'look like us' need to think about this carefully and how it may affect our loved ones. The law states that only persons involved in criminal activity can be questioned. Well - ask those who have been guilty of driving while Black how that works in the 50 states of our country.

MajorMike's picture

Note to DM: Illegal is NOT a race. Your continuing attempts to justify a party position by whipping out the ole "race card" has not worked for the liberals in Washington and it surely won't fly in Fayette County Georgia.

The race card is all dm knows. If she couldn't pull the "race card" how would she be able to function?

You have to understand dm's "logic". People, if they are any other color than the white color should be allowed to break the law at will. As long as they are not white they can commit a felony by crossing the border illegally. Notice she only mentioned "brown" or "yellow" people, as being the victims of citizenship laws. That may not be what dm meant to imply, but it is the way I interpreted her comments. That is the way, or the message of her posts come across to me.

.

I mention race because that is part of what is going on here. How many 'whites' with a foreign
accent will be asked to show their work permit along with the ID if they run a stop light? I also feel this law is going nowhere, but will be used for getting votes. There is a strong anti- Hispanic sentiment because our existing laws have not been enforced and the Hispanic has become cheap labor for American business. Our so-called leaders see this as a hot- topic/ vote getter. The law is UN-constitutional. I have met some wonderful people here in Fayette County with German accents, British accents, French accents, etc. They 'blend' in and are not considered a threat to our economy. False work permits are already in the hands of some illegals. The part of the bill that demands that businesses use E - Verify is already doable without passing another law. So I call this a 'feel-good' bill for those who think this bill will help taxpayers. Another contributer has already pointed out how it won't. These people come in droves to work. They are cheap labor used by lawbreakers who don't want to pay employer taxes . They like it here, so they stay. Some Americans like them here because they save them money. That's just the way it is. The Hispanics and Asians don't blend in - that's where 'race' comes in. The citizen who has ID, but no work permit and speaks with an accent - what happens to him while they're probing his legal status? Carry his birth certificate? There are those who doubt the validity of that document. Oh well, if you don't look Hispanic, you don't have to worry about it.

Sometimes a blue sky is just a blue sky. This is a law that should have been enforced for years by the federal gov. but they have dropped the ball. There is nothing diabolic about it. People that are here legally have nothing to worry about.

What is the percentage of Germans, Swedes, and Swiss that come here illegally to work? The percentage might be great I'm just not aware of it.

I agree to a certain point. However there is an ugly reality to life. I've gone with one too many families whose relatives were illegally 'deported' because they couldn't prove their citizenship. There are 'legal' steps to deportation, but lo and behold, there are individuals in authority who just feel they can take the law in their own hands and skip the 'formalities'. But I'll hang in there to help people understand why there is a protest to this law. If you haven't experienced unfair treatment , I admit, it's difficult to understand how a 'legal' person could be caught up in this. So many people here express their dissatisfaction with 'government ' - it's interesting to note how many believe this law will solve what the government has had the authority to do for many,many years. A friend reminded me that for years in LA, driving while 'white' with long hair in a tye-dye shirt was reason for a police stop. There are young people in LA that came to Hollywood from other countries with a work permit, and never bothered to renew the permit. If their skin is 'white', in reality, they will not be stopped or questioned regarding their citizenship. A possible solution may be E Verify and stiff fines for the lawbreakers who hire illegals.

PTC Observer's picture

I have news for you DM, they could do this before this law. The fact is this bill only deals with those that are stopped for some other violation, then their legal status can be questioned, this can be anyone, even an old white guy had better be able to prove he is a citizen of this country, better start carrying a copy of your birth certificate folks.

Now, do you really believe that if a racist policeman wanted to stop someone for their skin color they couldn't do this before the bill? You have got to be kidding if you expect me to believe this. A racist cop doesn't need no stink'in bill.

If someone is a racist, they are a racist with our without any new bills, excuses, or anything else.

You need to take a reality check mom. This isn't about race, it's about protecting our borders.

Now a solution to all this is to simply take over Mexico, clean it up and start drilling for oil down there. You know like Mr. Obama is trying to do in Libya. After all we should protect innocent citizens of Mexico from being killed by drug lords, let's call those bad guys the Muammar Gaddafi of Mexico.

I great day for people who do pay taxes. A great day for those immigrants who chose to follow the law and loved our country enough to become LEGAL citizens. Their effort was not in vain. Like my grandfather who escaped from nazi Germany, many people through great sacrifice and hardship have come here legally. They have made a choice to come here legally and become taxpaying citizens.

Thank you to all of the immigrants who have come here LEGALLY and are making a contribution to our society.

This is a great law. Get legal or get out. Now if the state will just enforce the law and not be whimps like the federal government who does not enforce the law. And you Davids mom, the law doesnt tell them to stop any person who has a tan and an accent. Make sure your adopted kids have ID. See I solved that little petty problem for you.

NUK_1's picture

I don't know about the legality of this bill, but I do know from working abroad and being a "minority" in another country, you have both your current and not expired work permit/visa and national ID at all times or you GO TO JAIL and stay there until you can figure out who to call to get some money to buy an airplane ticket in order to be deported elsewhere. The cops don't give a damn about whether you feel you are being profiled because you're white and the population is 70% non-white.....you had better believe that the first thing they ask for if you are stopped at a traffic roadblock, go to a bank, buy a car and insurance, etc. is WORK VISA and ID.

One can argue that putting people in prison costs more than just letting them run around illegally, but most countries have no problem doing that because they feel it's a deterrent to others thinking of illegally living there.

Almost every country on the planet has stricter immigration laws than the US and many won't even let you WORK there even for a short time unless you have a desired skill that they specify AND you are sponsored by an employer before you ever set foot in the country. Is that "too harsh?" Uh, no.

America can't even take care of its own people, much less tens of millions of others who also drive down wages due to being here illegally and willingness to be exploited by some corrupt US employers.

Where is this place that you want to live?

NUK_1's picture

Who said anything about wanting to live there? I work in different countries but I am still mainly a US citizen/resident.

....What was your point?

You don't want to live there but you want to change the USA into something like them about immigration!

NUK_1's picture

Hey, isn't that what being in the United Nations and "globalism" is all about?

Nothing like borrowing good ideas from other countries who don't have immigration problems and actually take steps to correct those problems if they start occurring. US didn't have an illegal immigration problem for a very long time and has been afraid to address it since it became a noticeable issue. Why not adopt some of the same policies used very successfully in every other Westernized and even a lot of non-Westernized countries?

Of course, another route is to simply legalize drugs(not just pot...DRUGS!)and take the massive profits out of that business along with the extreme violence and corruption that accompanies it, and then maybe Mexico wouldn't be a 3rd world cesspool and people would actually attempt to improve that dump of a country instead of getting the hell out of it at any opportunity.

Of the two options, I sometimes wonder if maybe drugs will be legalized before the spineless cowards called "our elected officials" can manage to address the illegal immigration issue.

Also, do you ever think your propositions all the way through to the future and the ramnifications of those actions today?

You want nazis wandering round demandng "papers," at every turn?
(Like to be in the false papers business then).

Do you really think other countries do not have illegals?

Yes, wouldn't it be wonderful if anyone could buy some of Michael Jackson's "milk of magnesia. legally?

You sound like a politician---always promising crazy stuff!

First: States can not govern immigration--that is a federal function- the first court to try it will say that.

Even if the court allowed it, it is non-functional: "Contractors" aren't mentioned. There are also thousands of workers in companies under 10 employees.

How will cops check immigration status? Also, unless there is a felony committed by the suspect, the federal government won't take them--our jails would fill quickly.

They can still go to school and the emergency room, and will.

Busniesses must "swear" in an affadavid they verify citizenship---right!!!They don't even read the crap, just sign it. Even if they have them arrested, what do they do with them?

This is worse than Prohibition was in the 20s---useless--just a vote getter from dummies.

Even worse than that stupid stuff from Ryan's budget bill in D.C .

......but failed to learn anything!

Remember the TEA PARTY will kill any new amnesties, including so-called Immigration reform, Sanctuary States, Chain Migration, The dream act or any underhand way of passing any more AMNESTIES. By not enforcing restriction illegal immigration laws, should look to examples of the very serious overpopulations in border States of California, Nevada, Texas, New Mexico that have massive money problems; attributed by the illegal alien invasion. States that are not overrun or have implemented strict laws such as Georgia, can view illegal aliens skipping out, taking their economic families to feed of the generous welfare programs further afield. Learn more about the astronomical costs and Statistics at NumbersUSA or just typing into Google, illegal alien costs.

It's your America; not the 20 million plus foreigners and not the politicians who cower under the bombardment of open border lunatics. Join a local TEA PARTY and become an activist in the tens of millions other others fighting for jobs, cutting obsolete government agencies, building the real border fence and station permanent National Guardsman. Make E-Verify mandatory to catch criminal businesses hiring illegal aliens and make it an enforced police policy for every jail to use Secure Communities to fingerprint and process all individuals to verify their immigration status. The country is in the worst predicament of owing Chinese and foreign investors over 14 Trillion dollars and now want more taxes from ordinary Americans. So if this is the case, why are we not removing economic illegal immigrants from our shores? Hundreds of billions would be saved and, then would start returning jobs to our own citizens and legitimate residents.

A dirty business that attributes profits from illegal labor must be dealt with in the harshest way. No slaps on the wrist or mediocre fines, but judged on its incorrigible merits. With Fines from $50.000 up; confiscations of all business assets to fund ICE. Businesses with large ratio's of illegal labor, a term of at least a year in prison on first offense. This should not be home incarceration, but in a federal correction facility. That should determine that hiring foreigners carry a nasty risk of committing a felony. Same with people, who scorn our laws to enter America illegally, should carry a penalty of not a worthless civil infraction, but a justifiable felony conviction. Shouldn’t prudent Americans wonder why this has never been the case? It makes sense that this was intentional to allow illegal immigrants to enter our lands with impunity? Janet Napolitano can gesture all she wants about the border being better secure? Then perhaps she would like to buy London Bridge from me.

THROW OUT ALL THE ILLEGAL ALIEN PROCURERS, OF WHICH POLITICIANS, GOVERNORS, MAYORS, POLICE CHIEFS & OTHERS.

Read about illegal alien widespread Tax fraud at http://www.thesocialcontract.com/ the Pdf file "Illegal Aliens and American Medicine." http://tinyurl.com/o6r27 and the report "DRAINING AMERICA INTO POVERTY" at http://tinyurl.com/3mv3vzm These are reports that the Leftists, US Government Czars and radical open border zealots or lobbyists prefer you didn’t see.

IN 2012 budget we must enforce the Grand old party with new injection of TEA PARTY candidates, otherwise the future for our families are at financial risk. NOT FOR ONE MINUTE THINK THIS HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH YOU? IT COULD BE YOUR JOB NEXT?

Today, Tennessee to stop illegal aliens voting passed a law to demand picture ID at registration. Low income Americans who are verified through birth records can apply for a free Identification card.

Attn: Gaining momentum is Billionaire potential President Donald trump, who has already spoken out about the Chinese Free trade treaty that is a rip-off, the same as Nafta and Cafta that must be negotiated. He also views Saudi Arabia as unfriendly to America, after everything we have accomplished for them, such as the Gulf War, when Iraq invaded. Now Opec that Saudi Arabia is associated with is cutting back on its oil supplies and our nation is being gouged by speculators in Wall street. Open up Alaska and anywhere we have oil reserves and a pox on the environmentalists. Other budget lowering legislation must include a reduction or closing obsolete government agencies and returning them to State jurisdiction. Even the defense monopoly should be examined, to see if a we can cut back on overseas military reservation and demand those countries attribute to their own protection.

albion's picture

The federal government has already told Arizona they're not allowed to deal with illegal immigration themselves. Georgia will hear the same message the day they attepmt to enforce this legislation.

The Tea Party: Celebrating symbolic, short-sighted and ineffective legislation since 2009!

"All generalizations are false, including this one." - Mark Twain

PTC Observer's picture

"The federal government has already told Arizona...." "Georgia will hear the same message...."

This has not been decided yet, it is pending in the courts.

A state has a right to protect its borders, the question is will the Supereme Court agree with this.

It must be really hard to understand, well, at least for politicians. The Tenth Amendment explicitly states that powers not granted to the federal government nor prohibited to the states by the Constitution are reserved to the states or the people. Let's hope we still have 5 Constitutional Patriots left on the SC. -GP

PTC Observer's picture

the 10th Admendment has been chisled away by the Feds since moment the signing of the Constitution took place, the very thing the document was suppose to protect against!

How does it work when companies in our community employ foreigners allow here on visa for work and stay years and years and years. Buy homes earn top dollar receive care and all the comforts yet refuse to become american citizens. I really dont know so dont start throwing out "DA" remarks at me, I would just truly like to know.

Robert W. Morgan's picture

First of all, it is not a worker problem as everyone seems to think. It is an employer problem. Employers who knowingly or unknowingly hire illegals or let legals stay on forever are the ones the new law is aimed at.

Some workers have work visas, some just appear after they pay about $3,000 to cross the border illegally. Either way, they work long hours very hard and the employer has a vested interest in not knowing the worker's citizenship status. He sure has no incentive to check the expiration date on the worker's visa or even verify that he has one. If the worker stays off the feds radar screen by paying taxes on W-2 income (using a phony SS#) or not paying taxes on cash earnings, no problem. Rent a house, buy a house. A car. Register to vote (Democrat). Shop at Sam's Club. Free health care at the emergency room. Live the American dream. Send money home. Anything you want. Employers can reduce their labor cost by 40% by paying illegals off the books in cash. Happens every day.

Even if the worker runs afoul of the law - traffic accident, no proof of insurance, etc. the local police may or may not look into his citizenship - they simply deal with the specific crime and the worker pays his fine (in cash) and life goes on. I have been told by more than one police officer that if they do suspect someone of being illegal and they report this to the feds - nothing happens - regardless of the laws on the books. Hence the Matt Ramsey bill. If the feds won't do it (hispandering by the politicians) then the states will. Sure the bleeding-heart short-sighted liberal fools will protest, but at the end of the day, you are either "legal" or "illegal" and those words carry their own meaning. And it is not racial except to those people who think everything is racial. It is about being legal - or not.

Of course there is another side to this and that is some companies will comply with the law and by doing so their labor costs will skyrocket and that will contribute to price increases, which we will all pay to keep the legal company and its legal workers in business. Or not - if we have a cheaper (if illegal) alternative.

Oh, and all this is much ado about nothing as the bill specifically exempts companies with 10 or fewer employees - which with the exception of large landscape companies or chicken processors is almost everyone.

Live free or die!

OK I understand that and thank you for explaining in your intimidating 'lucy' manner, which by the way didn't work. But I am talking about the executive type employee the ones that are what, loaned from the parent company say from Germany and return time again to renew their visa but continue to live here l5 plus years. Is that legal, isn't there some point in which they have to make a decision on whether to become a US citizen? I know some years back the US allowed dual citizenships but that law is no longer exist. Can you give me some insight on how that works?

Robert W. Morgan's picture

Maybe there is a special kind of visa for an executive that is deemed essential - meaning that a German company would only trust a German national in a certain job - as opposed to an American. The Japanese do that as well - TDK, Panasonic. And I'm sure Sany will do the same with their Chinese managers. At least these people are here legally even if the law is odd.

Live free or die!

I DONT KNOW

Robert W. Morgan's picture

and it seems as if it that way more than just once a month. I think I will let he suffer on her own. Can't help some people.

Live free or die!

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