Landlords Can’t Ask About Immigration – Full Story
By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
Published: October 12, 2007
Filed at 3:24 p.m. ET
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — California has become the first state to prohibit landlords from asking tenants about their immigration status, drawing sighs of relief from property owners who were concerned they might have to be ”de-facto immigration cops.”
The law signed this week by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenneger prevents cities from punishing landlords who rent to illegal immigrants. More than 90 communities nationwide have tried to curb illegal immigration by proposing crackdowns on property owners who rent to them or businesses that employ them, among other measures.
Supporters of tighter immigration control said the California law would prevent local governments from acting on an issue where the federal government has failed.
”It’s clear that Washington, D.C., doesn’t want to deal with this problem,” said Rick Oltman of Californians for Population Stabilization. ”You have cities that want to deal with the problem and this bill would stop them.”
Of course Lou Barletta had to chime in”
California’s law ”certainly adds salt to the wound for mayors who are trying to protect their legal residents and their budgets from the burden of illegal immigration,” said Mayor Lou Barletta of Hazleton, Pa., which passed an ordinance last year penalizing landlords and employers who do business with illegal immigrants. The rule was struck down in federal court as unconstitutional. The city is appealing.