When the Legislature passed an employer sanctions bill that was signed into law last year, it was considered legally questionable.
But the law has functioned largely as intended. So Proposition 202, which is pushed as a “fix,” is unneeded and may undermine the current law.
Under the law, business owners who knowingly hire people not in the country legally can be prosecuted. A first violation causes business licenses to be suspended for 10 days; a second violation leads to permanent revocation.
No one has been prosecuted under the law, but there are anecdotal reports that it has prompted some illegal immigrants to leave the state.
The law isn’t perfect, but it has been upheld by two federal courts. And last year, the Legislature moved to fix some problems.
Prop. 202 would do away with the current law and replace it with a new but very similar one. It would make it more difficult for prosecutors to prove illegal workers were hired knowingly and would require that all complaints be signed and in writing.
We are leery of doing away with a law that has been upheld by the courts. The new one could be overturned, leaving Arizona with no employer sanctions law. We’d rather have the Legislature continue to improve it.
The Tucson Citizen urges a “no” vote on Proposition 202.
A Thursday editorial incorrectly reported a former leadership position held by Barney Brenner, a candidate for the District 3 seat on the Pima County Board of Supervisors.
Brenner is a former president of the Pima County Republican Club.