NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis


November 14, 2006

Farmers Branch -- a suburb of Dallas -- became the first Texas city to pass tough anti-illegal immigration measures.

A proposal to penalize businesses that employ undocumented workers was not voted on during the meeting.  But those that were -- which passed unanimously -- include:

  • Fines for landlords who rent to illegal immigrants.
  • Making English the city's official language.
  • Allowing local authorities to screen suspects in police custody to check their immigration status.

Since 1970, Farmers Branch has changed from a small, predominantly white bedroom community with a declining population to a city of almost 28,000 people, about 37 percent of them Hispanic, according to the census.  It also is home to more than 80 corporate headquarters and more than 2,600 small and mid-size firms, many of them minority-owned.

More than 50 municipalities nationwide have considered, passed or rejected similar laws, but until now that trend hasn't been matched in the Lone Star State.

Source: Anabelle Garay, "Texas city OKs anti-immigration measures," Houston Chronicle, November 14, 2006.


Browse more articles on Government Issues