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L.A. City Council to file court brief backing overturning of Arizona immigration law

June 8, 2010 |  2:34 pm
The Los Angeles City Council voted Tuesday to file a court brief supporting a coalition that is seeking to overturn an Arizona law that cracks down on illegal immigration.

On an 8-2 vote, the council agreed to file paperwork siding with the plaintiffs in Friendly House, et al vs. Whiting, which charges that Senate Bill 1070 interferes with federal power and authority over immigration matters. The law makes it a state crime to lack immigration papers and requires police to determine the citizenship status of people they stop for another lawful reason and suspect are in the country illegally.

Among the plaintiffs in that case are the Service Employees International Union, United Food and Commercial Workers International and the Arizona Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.

Last month, the Arizona law prompted the council to ban city travel to that state and to avoid doing business in the future with companies based there.

Council President Eric Garcetti wrote the proposal to file the friend of the court brief and secured the minimum eight votes needed for passage. The two opponents were Councilmen Paul Krekorian and Bill Rosendahl.

Krekorian called Arizona’s law “misguided” but said that the council should not add more work for the city attorney’s staff, which is already facing a reduction in personnel. “This was not the right time to ask them to weigh in at taxpayers’ expense on an ordinance that’s out of state,” he said.

-- David Zahniser at Los Angeles City Hall

Photo: L.A. Times file