February 9, 2017

Santa Fe weighing lawsuit against government over ‘sanctuary city’ executive order

Santa Fe Mayor Javier Gonzales.

The city of Santa Fe hasn’t made a decision on whether or not to sue the federal government over its sanctuary city status, but it is an option on the table.

This comes after President Donald Trump signed an executive order to withhold federal funding from “sanctuary jurisdictions.”

“We are working on our legal strategy to clarify our standing, marshal our strongest possible arguments, and consider ways to address the executive order on so-called Sanctuary Cities,” city spokesman Matt Ross said in a statement. “One of those avenues may very well be a lawsuit, so it’s certainly on the table, but we’re not there yet.”

The city of San Francisco sued the federal government last week over Trump’s executive order.

Ross noted that City Attorney Kelly Brennan brought up the issue at a city council meeting Wednesday night.

“There was a good discussion and general agreement to get that process started, to have conversations with the legal community in Santa Fe and with advocates like the ACLU, and then to report back to the Council for a final decision,” Ross said.

Santa Fe Mayor Javier Gonzales has been one of the most outspoken opponents of President Donald Trump’s push to end federal funding for “sanctuary cities,” which would include Santa Fe.

Gonzales said shortly after Trump’s election that the city would not roll back its limits on cooperation with federal entities on immigration enforcement.

There is no formal definition for what makes a sanctuary city.

Santa Fe does not allow the use of public resources to check for someone’s immigration status, which means city police are not supposed to check for the immigration status of those they arrest.

Throughout his campaign, Trump said that he would “end sanctuary cities” and vowed to cut off funding.

The Santa Fe New Mexican reported the city of Santa Fe removed the word “sanctuary” from a proposed resolution on the city’s stance towards immigrants. The resolution keeps existing policies in place to bar city law enforcement from inquiring about a person’s citizenship status.