Local state lawmaker helped author sanctuary cities bill - KFDA - NewsChannel 10 / Amarillo News, Weather, Sports

Local state lawmaker helped author sanctuary cities bill

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AMARILLO, TX - With the special session almost coming to an end, one area lawmaker is hoping a bill he helped author gets approved. If it passes it would change the way some Texas cities enforce immigration laws.

SB 9 has received much criticism from some civil rights groups because it would prohibit Texas cities from adopting practices that protect illegal immigrants. Opponents of the bill argue it would mean the separation of thousands of families and could potentially hurt the state's economy.

However, Senator Kel Seliger of Amarillo who helped author the bill, argues its passage will help secure our borders. According to Seliger, it's a job that is costing Texas millions of dollars and should ultimately fall on the shoulders of the federal government.

"The state of Texas is going to spend about $219 million in the next biennium as oppose to about $160 million because our border is not secure as it should be. That is the responsibility of the federal government" said Senator Kel Seliger, (R) District 31.

SB 9 would also strengthen regulations for anyone applying for a driver's license or state issued ID.  The bill passed in the senate after six hours of debate and is now being debated in the House State Affairs Committee.

Lawmakers have less than a week left to decide.