Los Alamitos officials will consider an ordinance to exempt itself from a California law that limits cooperation between local police and federal immigration agents.
The Orange County Register reports that the small city, located near Westminster and Cerritos, will discuss the proposal at a meeting on Monday.
The proposed ordinance says city councilmembers have taken an oath to uphold the Constitution and that California’s so-called sanctuary law may conflict with it and federal law.
Loyola Marymount University law professor Kathleen Kim says the argument in the city’s proposed ordinance is flawed.
Mayor Troy Edgar says he wants to discuss the proposal.
Los Alamitos is a city of less than 12,000 people.
Earlier this month, California’s law was legally challenged by the federal government. U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions went to Sacramento to file a lawsuit against California, Gov. Jerry Brown and the state’s attorney general, Xavier Becerra.
The lawsuit is challenging three laws, including SB54, the so-called California sanctuary state known as the California Values Act, as unconstitutional.
Los Alamitos Councilman Warren Kusumoto, who introduced the proposed ordinance, was out of town and could not be reached for comment.
Mayor Troy Edgar, saying he wants to discuss the proposal, is tentatively in favor of Kusumoto’s proposal. “The state had overstepped its boundary” in passing the sanctuary law, Edgar said.
Councilwoman Shelley Hasselbrink said that if adopting the proposed ordinance doesn’t negatively impact the city, she too would support it “to stay consistent with my oath (of office.)”
Some residents welcome the proposed law.
“Everyone holding elective office takes the same oath to uphold the laws to protect and defend the Constitution of the United States. It doesn’t say unless the state legislature decides otherwise,” said Art DeBolt, a longtime community activist, via e-mail. “I do believe somewhere in our history, we fought a war to prevent states from ignoring the law of the land and preserving the union.”
The Los Alamitos City Council is scheduled to meet at 6 p.m. Monday at 3191 Katella Ave.
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