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The Bobster
09-06-2018, 06:45 PM
https://nypost.com/2018/09/06/city-wont-back-council-bill-that-would-bar-business-with-ice/

City won’t back council bill that would bar business with ICE
By Rich Calder
September 6, 2018 | 5:15pm | Updated

The de Blasio administration won’t be backing a City Council bill prohibiting the city from doing business with agencies enforcing federal immigration laws because it could leave New York vulnerable to terrorist attacks, a top official said Thursday.

Bitta Mostofi, commissioner of the Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs, told the Council’s Immigration Committee that the administration supports the “goal” of the bill to distance the city from the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency. :mad:

But Mostofi pointed out that two city contracts with the Department of Homeland Security unrelated to immigration reform would be voided under the proposed legislation — including one the city relies on to help monitor “the air for agents likely to be used in a bioterrorism attack.” :D

“This contract serves extremely important national security interests, and is unrelated to civil immigration enforcement,” said Mostafi.

She was referring to an agreement DHS’ Office of Health Affairs has with the city’s Department of Health to use a lab for its “BioWatch program.”

The Health Department collected about $50,000 off the deal with the feds last year.

The second contract, worth $139,000 a year, allows ICE’s Homeland Security Investigations unit to use an NYPD’s firing range in the Bronx for training.

Mostofi afterward told The Post she is hopeful the Council would work with the administration by modifying the bill’s language so it would not affect public safety.

Councilman Carlos Menchacca (D-Brooklyn), who chairs the Immigration Committee, said he’s willing to “negotiate” with the administration, but believes he has enough support on the Council to get his legislation passed – even without Mayor Bill de Blasio’s support.

“This Council has done many things against the will of this mayor, so theoretically, absolutely we will have” the votes, Menchacca said.

Menchacca’s bill is scheduled to go before the Immigration Committee for a vote on Sept. 12.