Board (of supervisors) Chairman Corey A. Stewart (R-At Large) said he will spend the rest of the year lobbying the General Assembly to pass legislation that enhances law enforcement powers to capture, detain and deport illegal aliens; curbs illegal day laboring; and creates specific state penalties for illegal immigrants. He called the effort the "Virginia Rule of Law Campaign."
Prince William has received national attention for its own crackdown on illegal immigration. The county's law, which was enacted in 2007 and modified in 2008, requires that police officers inquire into the immigration status of all people who are arrested on suspicion of violating a state or local law.
Stewart said that he is working on a final draft but that he wants the legislation to direct Virginia law enforcement officials to determine, in any lawful contact, the legal status of an individual. Another key point of the bill, he said, would be to prohibit jurisdictions from calling themselves sanctuaries for illegal immigrants.
Stewart said his proposal would go further than what Prince William did in 2007. He said the county's law was a success -- that illegal immigrants fled and that overall crime dropped to a 15-year low in 2009.