Sandstrom pulls immigration bill to revise enforcement costs


Return To Article
  • Still Jim Bountiful, UT
    Feb. 10, 2011 7:03 a.m.

    We have drunk driving because it costs too much to enforce the law. It is obvious that Sandstrom's measure is an extremely expensive one. The language Sandstrom uses is that of an intolerant individual who has no desire to look at the facts. There are so many who believe themselves to be conservatives who cannot see the facts. This bill would be an economic disaster for not only state government but also city and county government. Perhaps we need some of you who are so much in favor of this to shell out more for the higher tax burden this will impose.

  • Pappy Saint George, UT
    Feb. 9, 2011 10:00 p.m.

    "A police chief in one city said it would take an officer about 3 ½ hours to process someone in that scenario, taking them away from other public safety tasks."

    Processing a DUI case takes the officer away from other public safety tasks.
    Processing a wife-beater takes the officer away from other public safety tasks.
    Processing a robbery suspect takes the officer away from other public safety tasks.
    Pocessing a traffic fatality takes the officer away from other public safety tasks.
    Being interviewed by the media takes the officer (Chief) away from other public safety tasks.

    On and on with the lame excuses of police chiefs who fail to uphold their oath of office.

  • isittrue Midvale, Utah
    Feb. 9, 2011 6:32 p.m.

    Law-fromariz, yes I see the need to protect especially because of recidivism.
    So create a federal law, and a federal database with eye and finger print identification. The law allows a citizen from another country to be prosecuted in the United States. The data base can be accessed, permissable by law, when any person, even you or I are interrogated by police. There would be no profiling since everyone is treated equally, and a felon with anew name would have the same eye and finger I.D.

  • jim l West Jordan, UT
    Feb. 9, 2011 5:01 p.m.

    Get it done.

  • lawenforcementfromAZ Glendale, AZ
    Feb. 9, 2011 2:41 p.m.

    It's sad when law enforcement officials try and torpedo a proposed law by using inflated data, rather than seeing where the law could be used to better ensure the public safety and eventually lower the cost of law enforcement. Criminal illegal aliens are encarcerated at twice the percentage of their general population. And recidivism is substantially higher as they return to the US after they have been deported.

  • isittrue Midvale, Utah
    Feb. 9, 2011 2:08 p.m.

    The HYPNOTIC factor. When Arizona closes the door, the illegals will flood in Utah, and then Mr. Sandstrom will scare off the bad guys with the same power and their relatives can pay us fees if they are legal enough to still work her and send money home. Money can hypnotize also. The For Profit Prison industry stands to do well, that is, it will have beds ready for people who really should be shown the door back to home, but money talks and the private prison industry can pen the bull for a much larger fee than just a little old money transfer fee.

  • Chris E Provo, UT
    Feb. 9, 2011 1:20 p.m.

    I fully support enforcing our immigration laws. But I do not agree with this type of enforcement law.

    The reasoning of asking because of "reasonable suspicion" is flawed. Why don't we then ask people in suits if they are committing fraud because we have a reasonable suspicion because people who look like them commit those crimes? Or what about angry people who we might have a reasonable suspicion that they beat the wife and kids? I assume that most people would disagree with being targeted just because people like them might commit certain types of crime.

    People need to get it through their heads that disagreeing with Arizona type laws does not mean that one thinks that we should never enforce our laws or that he or she doesn't care if people are here illegally. If people for the bill are tired of people called racist or bigoted because it's not true, they should not do the same types of things to those on the other side.

  • pburt Logan, UT
    Feb. 9, 2011 12:45 p.m.

    There is a lot of talk here about the cost or legality of this proposed law. But I think the question we should ask is, Why in the world do we want such a mean-spirited law representing our state? Those who are 100% behind this law come across as mean and prejudiced. Why should we begrudge a better life and education to people just because their skin is brown?

    Before people start to scream that they should immigrate legally, refer to the earlier comment that enumerated the horrible things going on in the Mexican drug wars. Would any of you put an administrative rule over the safety and well-being of your family? Not me! I would crawl across that border in a heartbeat to save my family from that sort of hardship and danger.

    To those who say any cost is worth enforcing the law (immigration is not a criminal offense) how much should we pay for more police to chase down those that license their cars in Idaho to avoid fees, or to crack down on diesel pickups idling while pumping fuel? Second greatest commandment--love your neighbor. Don't judge by appearance and accent.

  • Spuban Provo, UT
    Feb. 9, 2011 12:33 p.m.

    "Those found to have a criminal record would be referred to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Those with a clean background would be fingerprinted, photographed and released."

    So explain to me how this bill is getting rid of illegals? Yeah it gets the criminals but the rest just get photographed, fingerprinted and released. And what about the criminal ones that are using stolen IDs or whose paperwork has falledn through the cracks? they just get released as well

    Instead of spending milions on a catch and release bill, how about passing bills that will actually work.
    For example bills that make life in Utah so uncomfortable that they choose not to live here. We could have bills that would prevent illegals from owning a car or hooking up utilitis or owning a home.
    After all, the argument that is brought up with Sandstroms bill is that is unconstitutional because of racial profiling. Nowhere in the constitution does it say you have the right to a car or to cable TV or..... I think you get the idea.

  • mightyhunterhaha Kaysville, UT
    Feb. 9, 2011 12:06 p.m.

    The fiscal report is false. it is saying that enforcement will add cost. Most of the enforcment is while the officers are already on the job. It doesn't create additional cost unless you do Utah Finance. Then the cost could be 100 million. I know 5 years olds that can come up with better figures.

  • anti-liar Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 9, 2011 12:03 p.m.

    Clearly, the slave-labor lobby is out in force. Completely consumed as they are by insatiable greed, they are determined to do everything in their power to stop this bill since they know that it would put an end to their gravy train of cheap labor. They have the assistance of the power-hungry Democrat's who want the illegals' votes (and yes, they CAN vote, using their fraudulent ID's!).

  • Ridgely Magna, UT
    Feb. 9, 2011 11:41 a.m.

    As usual the devil is in the details. I haven't heard one person mention the time needed, or the cost of training the thousands of law enforcement officers who will have to enforce this law.

    If something as simple as Baton Training takes hours every year (because of the potential liability and threats to police agencies and municipalities from law suits) then imagine how much training time something this complex and controversial will swallow.

  • facts_r_stubborn Kaysville, UT
    Feb. 9, 2011 11:38 a.m.

    Where has Utah been since 1995? We don't need to reinvent the wheel with a Utah bill. All we need to do is prime the pump with needed local law enforcement resources.

    Section 287(g) of the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1995 authorizes the Federal Government to enter into agreements with state and local law enforcement agencies, permitting officers to perform immigration law enforcement functions, pursuant to a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA.) Local law enforcement officers receive appropriate training and function under the supervision of sworn U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officers.

    Davidson County, Tennessee claims they saved millions of dollars and reduced crime by deporting illegal aliens under a 287(g) program in operation since April 2007. Thus far 8,000 illegal aliens that committed other crimes have been deported saving approximately $300,000 a week and allowing Davidson County to lease the extra jail space to other law enforcement agencies.

    As of 2009 ICE has trained more than 1,000 officers operating under 66 local agreements nationwide. Since January 2006, these 287(g)-trained officers are credited with identifying more than 120,000 individuals who are here illegally.

    Utah, get with the program.

  • tenx Santa Clara, UT
    Feb. 9, 2011 11:32 a.m.

    If additional taxes are required it will be ONE tax that I will gladly pay! Actually we will save a bundle on services that we now are providing for the illegals. Viva Legal Immigration!

  • UtahBlueDevil Durham, NC
    Feb. 9, 2011 11:27 a.m.

    Why would he pull it. All along the conservative argument has been that having illegals is costing out economy money. It seems perfectly logical that fixing the problem would cost money as well - but at the same time save money by reducing demand on other state services.

    His pulling the bill and not allowing it to be fully vetted makes no sense what so ever. There is no "low cost" way to enforce the law - he should know that.

  • realitybites Littleton, CO
    Feb. 9, 2011 11:15 a.m.

    It is a sad day for racists and bigots alike. I guess you will have to relieve your frustrations elsewhere.

  • ouisc Farmington, UT
    Feb. 9, 2011 11:00 a.m.

    $10 million per year in the state police budget is very doable--I'd still like to see this bill get to the floor. Many current police services could be redirected to this effort. This is what the citizens of Utah want!

    I would take this bill a step further....we should verify the citizenship of ANYONE pulled over. We offer proof of license, proof of insurance, why not proof of citizenship? Surely, we could find a way to expedite proof of citizenship.

  • Abe Sarvis Cedar City, UT
    Feb. 9, 2011 10:21 a.m.

    "In a meeting Monday with city and county officials, Sandstrom said he sees it more like a routine traffic stop and other duties police perform daily to enforce the law.

    "I don't understand how that can be an additional cost," he said.

    Let me help you, Stevie.

    1)If checking the ID reveals the person stopped is not in the country illegally, then all it costs is time. Of course, costing police time means that either you need more police to do an equal amount of enforcement (which means more salaries and expenses) or you do less enforcement - and since checking the IDs would primarily be connected with traffic stops, less enforcement means lower revenue to local police for traffic violations. That could be overcome with higher fines - say, $750 for doing 28 in a 25mph zone.

    If the driver or other passengers ARE in the US illegally, then that officer goes off traffic control while the detainee is processed. Again, you lose money normally gained through traffic citations, decrease safety during that time, and need to hire additional personnel - either officers or civilians - to handle the processing. Either way, it costs money.

  • CHS 85 Sandy, UT
    Feb. 9, 2011 10:19 a.m.

    We'll just close the Utah School for the Deaf and Blind to fund this bill.

  • anti-liar Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 9, 2011 10:04 a.m.

    @ facts_r_stubborn said:

    "How can he suggest that the legislative fiscal analyst is trying to defeat his bill? They are not political. Their job is merely to estimate the cost..."


    The data that the number-crunchers used at the Legislative Fiscal Analysts Office were supplied by..... Surprise! ..... the Utah League of Cities and Towns!

    The League isn't politically motivated??

    They haven't in fact taken a stand on the bill -- though they CLAIM they haven't??

    Make me laugh, please.

    Kenneth Bullock, Executive Director of the League, is now asserting: "Sandstrom didn't like the outcome of the fiscal analysis so he's crying wolf. I think it's just posturing and pandering to a constituency he's trying to get excited about this."

    One of the standard propaganda lies we have heard before.

    The sheer corruption we are finding again and again in Utah politics today at almost every turn seems to be surpassing even that of Chicago politics of the 1920's. What a shame on Utah.

    I suggest you support and enact the Sandstrom bill, Utah politicians. It is what the vast majority of the people want; it is right thing; and you know it.

  • Long Hair Pete West Jordan, UT
    Feb. 9, 2011 9:57 a.m.

    How many dangerous criminals will the jails have to release for Utah to arrest and detain over 100,000 people? How much will it cost to detain and feed over 100,000 people? There has to be a better way.

    Also, how will local municipalities absorb the loss of over 100,000 consumers who buy taxed merchandise every day in their communities? To claim that the people who are here illegally do not pay taxes is simplistic and disingenuous.

    Sandstrom's bill is costly and some parts are most likely unconstitutional. it amounts to a message bill that will never have teeth due to its cost and its illegality. But hey, what part of unconstitutional and illegal does Sandstrom not understand?

  • granolagirl Draper, UT
    Feb. 9, 2011 9:34 a.m.

    Why do people keep griping about the costs of this bill? Didn't you all read the article just posted yesterday, where Sandstrom says he is considering funding his bill by charging a fee on every wire transfer that an illegal does, to send money to their family in the country they came from? I tell you what, with how much money they drain out of our US economy, that will add up to a lot of money to fund Sandstrom's bill, and then some!!

    Also, about the police griping on having to verify the status of people they suspect are illegal: If we pass Sandstrom's bill, illegals will leave Utah so fast, police will only have to do it for about 2 weeks. Look what happened in Arizona when they passed SB 1070 - the illegals packed up and left Arizona in the middle of the night, faster than the ink had dried on Jan Brewer's signature!

  • Fitness Freak Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 9, 2011 9:33 a.m.

    NOW is the time to contact your legislators and state senators voicing SUPPORT for the Sandstrom bill.

    You might also ask your legislator why MORE isn't being done to end the freeloading by foreign nationals!

    Driving privilage card? Not needed, since they shouldn't be here anyway.

    Want smaller class sizes? Deport the trespassers!

    In the next few days the unethical business groups
    (read: slave labor lobby)will be doing EVERYTHING IN THEIR POWER TO DEFEAT this bill.

    Tell your legislator how you feel!

  • Hellooo Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 9, 2011 9:24 a.m.

    So we are to believe that for the police who have stopped an individual for a criminal offense, and then have reasonable suspicion that the perpetrator of the crime is an illegal alien, so checks and finds out they are. Then books them for the offense and refers it to the Feds for the enforcement of National Law along with the other crime they have perpetrated is an additional cost to the system. If this is so then it is an admission of the police that they do not have in place an efficient system to detain criminals. Does it really take 3.5 hours to process a person in the system. I think we have identified with Mr. Sandstrom bill a very inefficient police efficient, which must be fixed whether or not Sandstrom's bill passes. One must ask, why are the police administrators so in favor of the exploitation of Non-US citizens that they continue to support illegal immigration into their communities. Further, every police office in the state should now be audited as to what is causing this gross inefficiency to persist cost taxpayers exorbitant amounts of tax money.

  • John C. C. Payson, UT
    Feb. 9, 2011 9:02 a.m.

    It's obvious that Sandstrom is closing his eyes about the clear costs of an unfunded mandate. But what needs to be more clear is the ultimate cost of pushing away people who are already refugees from the poverty, corruption and crime mentioned by Red Smith. While they are here they still pay taxes, spend money, and create more jobs than they take. Let's at least harbor them until the US opens the visa quotas to reasonable level and offers those here illegally a compassionate, fair way to reenter legally.

  • Walt Nicholes Orem, UT
    Feb. 9, 2011 9:01 a.m.

    The cost is a red herring. How much does it cost to enforce the seat belt law? (Some will say that is offset by federal road funds for certain levels of enforcement, but that is really the cost of encroaching on our personal liberties.) The cost to society of illegal immigrants is more than the cost of enforcing this bill.

    And still it isn't about cost. It is about law. We don't crab about the cost of enforcing new laws against "spice" - we do it because it is deemed necessary. Well this bill is necessary, and will pay for itself in the reduction of costs for those who are here against the established laws of the country.

  • LDS Mom American Fork, UT
    Feb. 9, 2011 8:25 a.m.

    Aren't law enforcement officers going to be out there doing their job anyway? Why is the ESTIMATED cost so high? It's a ridiculous at best estimate.

  • Gigio New York, NY
    Feb. 9, 2011 7:56 a.m.

    The estimate is very conservative... and the legal fees projection is low. Think about the challenges from National and Local Immigration leagues, and our own Federal govt. Legal fees are not free. and the years to fight it, too long. In the end, all of this ...for nothing...UT is stepping on Federal grounds.

  • snowbird Ogden, UT
    Feb. 9, 2011 7:19 a.m.

    utah police have to spend there time keeping the people safe.and these poor illegal mexican people just come here to join the lds church..they dont commit crimes or sell drugs or do anything that is against the law,they work hard to be able to take care of there familys they open small mexican grocery stores on red wood road at twenty seven hunderd south..they pay there tithing you cant go into a lds ward and find a seat because they people are in church every sunday..people in utah need to understand that if sandstorms law passes we could see a change in genral conference.another thing the people in utah will not try to learn spanish to comunicate with theys wonderful people..you just dont appriciate what these people do for you people of utah..they are really hard workers

  • The Real Maverick Orem, UT
    Feb. 9, 2011 7:12 a.m.


    Utahns might have to... *gasp* actually pay for services????

    Crazy stuff!

    As has been said all along, if you want to eliminate illegal immigration, it's going to cost ya!

    Cost you more at the supermarket, cost you more at the hotel, and will cost you more in taxes.

    Are you willing to pay for this? Or are Repubs just going to do what they have mostly done the past 4 years, cry about it?

  • raybies Layton, UT
    Feb. 9, 2011 7:08 a.m.

    I think it's a fair question as to how local enforcement will be able to do the job of a federal agency without significant budgetary increase.

  • facts_r_stubborn Kaysville, UT
    Feb. 9, 2011 6:49 a.m.

    @Cougar Keith,

    Fair enough, when you say the cost will be worth it. But, the fact is the funding has not been provided in Sandstrom's bill and it will be an unfunded mandate to local governments if passed as is.

    If you want it to pass, pony up and pay the cost. Where you get the savings or additional revenue from is another matter, but the appropriation must be made. Simple as that, like it or not.

    Even is you say this additional enforcement emphasis will save far more in savings on services to illegals who will go home, as many claim, that still does not fund the specific agencies entrusted with the actual enforcement. The savings would be realized in other areas.

    This is really very simple. Fund the local agencies or it is by definition an unfunded mandate, and makes our state legislators hypocritical in the extreme even as they rightly call for no federal mandates to the states.

  • facts_r_stubborn Kaysville, UT
    Feb. 9, 2011 6:43 a.m.

    @ gogogoff,

    Why do so many of you, not only fail to ground your assertions, but when the facts are right in front of your nose you twist the truth to be a lie in order to suit your purpose? The ends do not justify any means.

    @ Curmudgeon did not say in his posts anything about a preference for apprehending citizens who commit violent crimes first over illegals who do the same crimes. You put words in his mouth and that gives you about zero credibility.

    It's quite obvious that's not what he meant. @ C is totally correct that law enforcement must prioritize their time, just like any other job, and just like life itself. And it is quite clear to any thinking person that the first priority should be violent and other serious crimes first, regardless of whether that person is in this country legally or not.

    If the funding is provided to expand resources in order to apprehend, detain and hand over illegal aliens to ICE under existing federal law, then more focus can be turned to those here illegally who are not perpetrating any other crime.

  • liberal larry salt lake City, utah
    Feb. 9, 2011 6:41 a.m.

    A cost estimate of 11 million dollars actually sounds a little low. Are they including the costs of building more jails to house these "illegals", and how much is it going to cost to deport the offenders?
    I think Sandstrom is suffering from a conservative entitlement mentality which thinks you can get services like education on the cheap. Maybe the police officers should "punch out" and do the background checks for free, or take pay cuts and work just for the love of public service.

  • cjb Bountiful, UT
    Feb. 9, 2011 6:32 a.m.

    "The proposed law would require local police agencies to verify the legal status of people detained for other offenses if the officer has "reasonable suspicion" they are in the country illegally".


    Therein lies the problem. This law will negatively impact minorities where the rest of the population is untouched. What is being proposed is an igdignity. Since this law only impacts a small portion of the population, it is likely to endure forever, unless the federal government comes to the rescue as they did in Arizona.

  • facts_r_stubborn Kaysville, UT
    Feb. 9, 2011 6:27 a.m.

    I've liked Sandstrom so far even though I don't think his bill is necessary or necessarily effective. However, I think he and the supporters of his bill are the ones who are twisting things now.

    How can he suggest that the legislative fiscal analyst is trying to defeat his bill? They are not political. Their job is merely to estimate the cost of all bills and attach a fiscal note. I think their estimates are conservative if anything. I believe if Sandstrom's bill were effectively enforced it would cost much much more than the estimate.

    That being said, if you support the bill it may be well worth the cost. But, please Sandstrom and supporters, do not be demagogues and insult our intelligence. Any thinking person, understands there will be a cost, or they will divert from enforcing other crimes that may be higher priority. If you are for the bill, fine, pay for it, but stop insulting our intelligence.

    I don't support the bill because the ability for local law enforcement to participate in federal immigration law enforcement already exists in federal law, or 287-G, secure communities etc.

  • Red Smith American Fork, UT
    Feb. 9, 2011 5:44 a.m.

    A day's drive south from Utah's capital (where good people argue about rights) are mass drug murders, be-headings, rampant police corruption, armed bands with military equipment, bullet sprayed homes, burned out cars, and essentially anarchy.

    With so much un-rest a day's drive from Utah, do nothing is not an option.

    If not Sandsrom's bill, then what? Continuing to do nothing about illegal immigration is irresponsible and a legislative failure.

  • Esquire Springville, UT
    Feb. 9, 2011 5:38 a.m.

    Typical that Republicans will spend anything it takes if it is their cause. When it comes to fiscal responsibility, they talk out of both sides of their mouths. Besides, the bill stands a good chance of being overturned.

  • Wayne Rout El Paso, TX
    Feb. 9, 2011 5:17 a.m.

    The cost is not even an issue. Getting illegals off the streets and back to their own country is the most important thing.

  • lost in DC West Jordan, UT
    Feb. 9, 2011 4:07 a.m.

    if cost is the only concern, then we should shut down the highway patrol. After all, it costs money. Same for the schools, fire departments, and every state agency.

    Feb. 9, 2011 12:09 a.m.

    Every immigration enforcement bill gets their cost question. Very few other enforcement ones do. It's a know path to stop bills on immigration. I saw it happen time and again in So. Cal.

    If we can afford 400 million to subsidize dishonest business owners, we can pay 5 million to get our citizens jobs back. We have 100,000 citizens looking for jobs. They deserve our compassion also.

  • joelwisch Albuquerque, NM
    Feb. 9, 2011 12:09 a.m.

    The Legislative Fiscal Analysts Office released figures this week showing it would cost local governments $5.3 million to $11.3 million annually to detain and verify the status of people suspected to be in the country illegally.
    That is an astonishing number for the job performed. I don't believe it is correct, and in fact, very high. If it proves to be the case in practice, it is time for a very serious audit.

  • gogogoff Orem, UT
    Feb. 8, 2011 11:22 p.m.


    So are you basically saying, I want them to go after the Criminals who are here Legally, and not the ones who are here ILLEGAL AND Criminals, FAIL LOGIC!

  • CougarKeith Roy, UT
    Feb. 8, 2011 10:54 p.m.

    The Cost WILL BE WORTH IT, even though they are OVERESTIMATING THE COST!!! Why don't they mark out the savings of health care, welfare, housing, "Free School Lunches" and every other cost that will be saved simply by the Bill Passing as Law? I get a kick out of all those who "Pooh-Pooh" the Bill on the side of "Cost Savings!" This is not to mention all the LEGAL Immigrants and Citizens who are currently unemployed and looking for work who are Collecting "Unemployment Benefits" right now! This is a good Bill that will promote JOB GROWTH and help REDUCE CRIME! Any Good "Legal Immigrant" who loves this country and Utah should be in favor of this Bill because it will help REDUCE the Crime Rate, Drug Trafficing, and those who would take refuge in this state while fleeing Arizona and soon Texas! The Savings inside of Three Years would PAY FOR THE BILL! While you figure out the "COST" Don't Forget To Figure In The Estimated "Savings" as well from getting rid of Illegals! It's pretty simple!

  • Curmudgeon Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 8, 2011 10:10 p.m.

    Sandstrom is a crybaby who can't stand to admit that his bill will require law enforcement to divert efforts from other activities to focus on removal of illegals. I'd rather see the police go after murderers, robbers, gang members, scam artists, and traffic violators, who really threaten our public safety. Let the feds enforce federal law.

  • legalimmigrant Springville, Utah
    Feb. 8, 2011 9:59 p.m.

    I support Sandstrom's immigration enforcement bill 100%. If we have to pay more taxes to get rid of illegals, so be it. It will eventually pay off - more jobs will be available to US citizens and legal immigrants, and we will no longer have to pay for the illegals' education, health care, welfare.