Sen. Hillyard concerned new immigration laws could drive more people underground

State Senator Lyle Hillyard, R-Logan, expects immigration to be a major focus of both the 2010 election campaign and the 2011 session of the Utah Legislature. Sen. Hillyard is co-chairman of the executive appropriations committee so he will be spending most of his time on budget issues.On KVNU’s Crosstalk show Monday, Sen. Hillyard said he does not expect to play a big role in the immigration issue. So what kind of bill would he vote for? He says if a bill comes to the Senate he will sit down with prosecutors and law enforcement officers and make sure he feels comfortable with it.”The law enforcement people tell me their greatest concern is it’s going to drive these people underground and many of them are victims of crimes,” Sen. Hillyard said. “They need to be protected, too, from people who take advantage of them. “My key vote will be if the law enforcement comes forward and says, ‘we need this bill, this bill will help us,’ then I’ll certainly support it. “If they come back and say, ‘it’s counter productive to what we need to do in law enforcement’ then I’ll be very hesitant.”Sen. Hillyard says immigration is actually a federal issue and he will only get involved if the state actually drafts a particular bill.

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