Senate correction’s budget moves to floor with controversial immigration provision

May 2, 2019

A state Senate committee approved a budget provision to financially penalize communities with sanctuary city policies. 

The committee passed a corrections budget Wednesday. It added language to the budget that would withhold jail dollars for communities that enact or enforce policies that prevents law enforcement from cooperating with federal officials on immigration matters.  

“I think it’s an important standard that we uphold,” said bill sponsor, Senator Tom Barrett (R-Charlotte). “That we want all facets of law enforcement to work collaboratively and cooperate together with one another and this is a good motivator for them to do that.”

But the Michigan Department of Corrections is not on board with the proposal. Chris Gautz is a spokesman for the department. He said if the counties lose the money, they’ll stop housing those inmates – and that means the prisons will have to take them. 

“Keeping the program the way it is and not having these cases be in doubt is best for the individuals involved that would be serving time in county jail and it’s also much better for the county taxpayers and state taxpayers,” he said.

The corrections budget is now waiting for a full Senate vote.