City of Palmview unanimously votes to support SB 4 lawsuit
Editor's note: This story has been updated.
The city of Palmview made a unanimous decision to support the litigation process against Senate Bill 4 with a letter to the court at a special meeting on Thursday evening.
"City council has voted to file an amicus curie brief with the court,” said Palmview Interim City Manager Leo Olivares. “An amicus brief is a friend of the court brief that basically helps the judge with additional information that or she may use in making a decision."
The decision to file an amicus brief instead of joining the litigation process was made following legal counsel and by direction of the city attorney.
"It’s something that is going to be affordable and have the same effect and have it on record as opposing SB4, because when you become a member to the litigation, you have to get other plaintiffs to agree,” Olivares said. “You may have to have defendants agree to join, so that presents some obstacles that we really don't want to pursue."
Cities across the state who have filed against the bill they deem unconstitutional include Dallas, Houston, Austin and San Antonio.
"That's something we need to send a message to let them know that this is something that's not right,” said Palmview Mayor Gerardo Perez. “We are here in the Valley and anywhere, so I go back to it's a federal law federal questioning. Why would our local officers ask you for any type of information?"
The bill was signed into law at the beginning of May and will allow police chiefs, officers and other law enforcement to ask individuals for their immigration status when detained.
"We are not here to detain anybody if you get pulled over--you're getting asked for a driver’s license, you are get issues a citation and be released,” said Palmview Police Department police Chief Christopher Barrera. “If somebody gets arrested, then they have to go through the arresting process, but as far as going out there and profiling individuals because we feel they are not US citizens-- that's something that we just don't do."
The city of La Joya voted to join the lawsuit against Senate Bill 4 Thursday morning.
More Senate Bill 4 coverage:
- Palmview may join lawsuit against Texas' so-called 'sanctuary city' law
- Brownsville mayor to propose joining SB 4 lawsuit
- La Joya mayor supports joining Senate Bill 4 lawsuit
Correction: The Palmview City Manager is Leo Olivares, not Leo Olivarez.