Arizona bill on hiring illegal immigrants moves forward

On Monday, July 2, less than a week after the immigration bill failed in the Senate, Arizona Gov. Janet Napolitano signed a bill that prohibits the hiring of illegal immigrants and requires that employers verify the legal status of their employees, according to The New York Times.

Napolitano believes the bill still needs some work, noting that it could cause the closing of hospitals or nursing homes as a result of one hired illegal immigrant. In addition, she says the bill does not provide enough money to investigate complaints. However, she decided to move forward with it "because Congress has failed miserably."

The bill states that if employers do not verify the legal status of their employees, their business licenses could be suspended. After a second offense, employers could have their state business licenses permanently revoked, which means they could not operate in Arizona.

Supporters of the bill say federal law has been too lax and more enforcement is needed.

More people cross illegally into the U.S. through Arizona than through any other state. Additionally, according to the Pew Hispanic Center, illegal immigrants account for one in 10 workers in Arizona.

Date : 7/5/2007