4/11 – WABE (Audio) – Immigration bills up for debate in session’s last week (2011-04-11)

WABE: Immigration bills up for debate in session’s last week (2011-04-11).

(2011-04-11)
Photo by Shomial Ahmad

(WABE)Controversial immigration bills are scheduled for debate during the last week of the legislative session. The bills’ opponents say the legislation harms Georgia’s economy. But one bill supporter says the legislation mostly enforces current law.

More than 20,000 Georgians signed a petition, urging Governor Deal to veto controversial immigration bills that might make it to his desk. Businessman Ron Reardon urged state lawmakers to

” Kill bills that repel tourists, cancel events and strangle business. Otherwise, instead of the green of money, we will have the red ink of a bleeding economy.”

Reardon says lawmakers have been na ve about how much the state’s economy will be negatively affected if the bills become law. But State Representative B.J. Pak, from Gwinnett, says the negative effects to the state’s economy will be caused by organized boycotts.

“I don’t think it’ll be caused by the law directly, so much as the fear of what they don’t know or think that the bill does is causing an overreaction.”

Pak is a co-sponsor to one of the bills. The bills require employers to use e-verify, and allow law enforcement to check the immigration status of certain suspects.

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