NJ voters in this county will weigh in on ‘sanctuary state’ rules
Some North Jersey voters will get to voice whether they support the state's new rules for dealing with federal immigration authorities. The Sussex County Freeholder Board on Wednesday passed a resolution to put the question on an upcoming ballot.
State Sen. Steve Oroho and Assemblymen Parker Space and Hal Wirths on Thursday applauded the move. In a news release, the Republicans slammed "state directives from unelected bureaucrats undermining federal immigration laws."
Earlier this week, local officials in Middletown — Gov. Phil Murphy's hometown — passed their own resolution against the state's Immigrant Trust Directive, which went into full effect in March.
Both actions came as Immigration and Customs Enforcement announced the arrest of more than 100 people in New Jersey on Monday.
According to the ICE office in Newark, the state's regulations did not affect the agency's ability to take anyone into custody and none were being held by any local agencies.
There has been sporadic local reaction ever since Murphy voiced his support for becoming a sanctuary state while campaigning for governor. The rules are designed to help immigrant communities not fear cooperating with law enforcement.
Last month, the Freehold Township Committee passed a resolution declaring that the township opposes policies to make New Jersey a sanctuary state for immigrants who are in the country illegally.
In Ocean County, Jackson's governing body passed a similar resolution in October 2018, even before the state attorney general officially had released the new rules.
Attorney General Gurbir Grewal has said that nothing in the directive limits New Jersey law enforcement agencies from enforcing state law – and nothing in the directive should be read to imply that New Jersey provides “sanctuary” to those who commit crimes in this state.
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