North Carolina House approves bill requiring police to cooperate with federal immigration agencies
North Carolina House approves bill requiring police to cooperate with federal immigration agencies

The North Carolina House of Representatives approved a bill Wednesday that would require local law enforcement and county governments to cooperate with federal immigration officials. 

The bill would make two amendments to the North Carolina General Statutes. The first would amend NC General Statutes § 162-62 to require law enforcement who are processing prisoners to report the number of immigration status inquiries regarding detained prisoners to the Joint Legislative Oversight Committee on Justice and Public Safety instead of the Governor’s Crime Commission. Section 162-62 already requires local law enforcement to inquire the resident statuses of criminal detainees to federal immigration authorities. Chapter 162 addresses the organization and duties of county sheriffs in North Carolinian counties.

The second amendment would amend NC General Statutes §153A-145.5 and §160A-205.2. It would make it illegal for local law enforcement to impede law enforcement activities of federal immigration law enforcement officials in places such as county jails, confinement facilities, satellite jails, or work release units. Such “activities” include direct communication with the detainees as well as accessing information related to said person. Chapter 153 addresses the operations of North Carolinian county governments.Section 153A-145.5 already makes it unlawful for local governments from enacting laws that limits or restricts federal immigration laws. Chapter 160A deals with municipal corporations. Section 160A-205.2 prohibits local governments from adopting sanctuary city policies.

The bill passed the state House of Representatives, 63-51. As of April 4, the bill passed its first reading in the state Senate. It is currently before the Senate Committee on Rules and Operations.