sanctuary cities


On Monday in Louisville, a panel of immigration experts will discuss the anti-sanctuary cities bill making its way through the Kentucky legislature.

The bill has already passed out of a state Senate committee and would ban cities, state agencies and public employees from adopting policies that discourage them from cooperating with immigration officials.

University of Louisville Professor Riffat Hassan, an Islamic scholar and one of the event’s organizers, says the bill would create a culture of fear among Kentucky’s immigrant and minority communities.

“The intent doesn’t seem to be positive. It’s not beneficent in its intent. It doesn’t give compassion and understanding to people who have already gone through so much,” Hassan said.

Kentucky LRC

Republican leaders in Kentucky’s legislature are rallying around a bill that would ban cities, public agencies and universities from adopting so-called “sanctuary” policies that snub federal immigration officials.

The proposal has raised concerns from immigration and civil rights advocates who worry that it would prod public workers into enforcing federal immigration law and increase the number of Kentuckians facing deportation.

Sen. Danny Carroll, a Republican from Paducah and the bill’s sponsor, said that it would create more avenues for citizens to report undocumented immigrants.

Liz Schlemmer

 Kentucky’s legislative session kicked off with lots of conservative red meat on Tuesday — gun rights advocates held a day-long rally outside the Capitol and leaders of the state Senate announced that their top two bills will be an anti-“sanctuary city” policy and a voter ID proposal.

But the main task lawmakers will have to tackle over the next 59 working days will be writing a new two-year state budget while state revenue is predicted to be far outpaced by costs.


Kentucky LRC

A western Kentucky lawmaker is supporting a pre-filed bill to ban sanctuary cities in the state. Sanctuary cities are municipalities that limit, or don’t coordinate with, federal officers to enforce immigration law. 

The bill Republican Rep. Richard Heath is co-sponsoring would prohibit local governments from becoming sanctuary cities and allow the state to withhold funding. Heath serves McCracken and Graves counties.


The legislation would also ban postsecondary schools from enrolling, employing or contracting with people who are undocumented. 


A Kentucky lawmaker has proposed a bill that would strip state funding from cities and state universities that have so-called “sanctuary” policies that restrict cooperation with federal immigration enforcers.

Rep. Lynn Bechler, a Republican from Marion, said the legislation would target immigrants who are in the country illegally and the institutions that provide them with safe haven.