(Indianapolis, Ind.) - Indiana could soon have an immigration law just as tough as Arizona’s.
The Senate Pensions and Labor Committee voted 8-1 to pass Senate Bill 590 Wednesday. It now heads to the Senate Appropriations Committee.
The bill authored by Sen. Mike Delph (R-Carmel) would require police who stop someone for another violation to ask for proof that they are here legally if the officer has “reasonable suspicion” they are not.
Other provisions include punishing businesses who knowingly hire illegal immigrants, prohibiting them from receiving scholarships or financial aid, and requiring the state to ask the federal government to reimburse for costs associated with illegal immigration.
"It's time lawmakers united and said we will no longer allow Indiana to be a sanctuary for people who are in our country illegally," Delph said about his legislation previously.
SB 590 goes a step further than Arizona’s controversial law by requiring all state and local government documents and forms to be printed in English only.
"It's time that we put an end to press one for English and two for Spanish in our state," Delph said. "We also must remove the handcuffs from our law enforcement by providing them with the tools and training necessary to identify individuals in our country illegally and then transfer them to federal custody."
Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller, a Republican, stood against SB 590 when testifying before the committee.
"While I understand the significant problems and deep frustration felt by our sister states, we must be realistic about the costs of the state superimposing itself onto a federal enforcement responsibility when the methods for doing so might be constitutionally suspect or fiscally impractical. By setting forth the immigration-reform goals Congress should pursue, the Indiana Compact strikes the right balance," Zoeller said.
Zoeller joined religious, civic, and education leaders in support of the “Indiana Compact.” The compact is a statement of benchmark principles for reform of federal immigration policy.