Sanctuary cities banned in Colorado! - SB 90 (2006)

Update: Wiens measure becomes law, bans sanctuary cities

May 2, 2006
Kelley Harp, Senate Republican Communications

DENVER - Senate Bill 90, by state Sen. Tom Wiens, R-Castle Rock, was signed into law Monday by Colorado Gov. Bill Owens. The measure prevents cities and local governments from implementing sanctuary policies allowing illegal aliens to live within their borders without any fear of punishment.

The new law accomplishes this by prohibiting the administration of grants by the Department of Local Affairs to any local government that declares itself a sanctuary city.

"Illegal immigration is clearly a major problem in this country," Wiens said. "All levels of government must work together if we want to find practical and effective solutions to this problem. This bill provides the necessary consequences currently missing in state law to punish local governments who instruct their officers to blatantly ignore federal law."

Senate Bill 90, would require all local law enforcement officers to report to federal immigration officials any person arrested in their jurisdiction who they reasonably believe to be an illegal alien. The bill would also require each city and county in Colorado to report to the General Assembly whether or not it has instructed their peace officers to cooperate with state and federal officials in the enforcement of immigration laws.

"This bill received strong bipartisan support throughout the process," Wiens said. "With this in mind, my hope is this bill will encourage important debate on the subject at the municipal and county levels as well as greater enforcement of our current immigration laws."

Senate Bill 90 became law immediately upon the governor's signature.

The key provisions of the statute are as follows:

  • Local governments cannot create a policy that bars police from cooperating with federal officials concerning the status of any person in Colorado.
  • Police must notify the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency if a person arrested for a crime is a suspected illegal immigrant.
  • The law does not apply to those arrested for minor traffic infractions or suspicion of domestic violence. However, immigration officials must be told if a person is convicted of domestic violence.
  • Cities and counties must notify local law enforcement officers in writing of their obligation to comply with the law.
  • Cities and counties must file an annual report to the state regarding how many illegal immigrants they reported to immigration officials.
  • Local governments that fail to report suspected illegal immigrants will not be eligible for state grants.

See CAIRCO's summary of SB 90.