Immigration debate continues as a Nebraska town approves ban on hiring or renting property to illegal immigrants. The ACLU has promised to file a lawsuit to block enforcement.
This small Nebraska meatpacking town has joined Arizona at the center of a national debate about illegal immigration after voters approved a ban on hiring or renting property to illegal immigrants, but an expected court challenge could keep the measure from ever taking effect.
"In a community of 25,000, it's going to be hard to take on the whole country, and it will be costly to do so," said Fremont City Councilman Scott Getzschman, who opposed the measure but said city leaders would support the results.
Fremont's vote is the latest chapter in the tumult over illegal immigration across the country, including a recently passed Arizona law that will require police investigating another incident or crime to ask people about their immigration status if there's a "reasonable suspicion" they are in the country illegally.
The Fremont measure will require would-be renters to apply for a license from the city. Officials must refuse to issue a license to applicants found to be in the country illegally. The ordinance also requires businesses to use the federal E-Verify database to ensure employees are allowed to work.
The city, which is about 35 miles northwest of Omaha, has watched as its Hispanic population surged in the past two decades, largely due to the jobs available at the nearby Fremont Beef and Hormel meatpacking plants.