Sanctuary State Bill could be blocked and sent back to voters on November ballot

Conservative groups pushing effort to collect 365,000 signatures to block it

Fresno, Calif. - The Sanctuary State law could be on the chopping block and sent back to the voters.

Governor Brown signed it into law last month, Senate Bill 54 prevents local law enforcement from working with Immigration Customs Enforcement.   

Local conservative radio host Ben Bergquam is behind the coalition of groups throughout the state who pushed for a referendum.   

Bergquam says they got the go ahead to start collecting the 365,000 signatures needed to block bill and send it to voters on the November 2018 ballot.

"If you are here illegally you don't have a right to be here," says Bergquam. "You talk about taxation without representation, using my tax dollars to go to somebody who isn't supposed to be here in the first place who committed crimes against citizens in this country and then take our tax dollars to protect that person is more than a slap in the face, it's criminal to me."

Bergquam has to collect the thousands of signatures needed to block the bill by January 3.   

"ICE should be able to do their work unimpeded in our jails," says Sheriff Margaret Mims.

Sheriff Mims says if ICE isn't in the jails, they'll be out in the community.

"The unintended consequence of that is they aren't just going to take the people they are looking for, if there are other people around who are in the country illegally, they're going to take them also," says Mims.

Samuel Molina with Mi Familia Vota supported SB54, he says it encourages undocumented immigrants to not be afraid and to build relationships with police.

"This keeps law enforcement focusing on actual emergencies not working with ICE," says Molina.

Bergquam agrees to disagree.

"If I go to Mexico I don't have any rights there, so if you commit crimes in America and you are illegal you should be deported immediately. There shouldn't be any protections," says Bergquam.

Sheriff Mims says on any given day more than 90 people are in the jail who are wanted by ICE. 

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