New immigration bills continue to be introduced in Texas rapidly, making it challenging to keep up with what bills have become laws and what actions can legally be taken against an individual seeking to immigrate to the United States. Immigration laws in Texas will continue to be complex issues for some time.
One of several current bills approved by the Texas Senate is House Bill 7. A primary focus for a knowledgeable Houston Immigration Attorney is to continually protect the rights of individuals throughout the immigration process despite ongoing changes in immigration law.
The Texas Senate has made immigration legislation a priority, and H7 Immigration Bill is part of that push of laws. What is included in this bill, and what should individuals seeking refuge in Texas be aware of? Immigration laws are usually the federal government’s authority, but this bill aims to rearrange this authority in Texas.
The H7 Immigration Bill allows for enhancing security operations along the Texas border. Additional tools will be available for law enforcement to increase safety measures in these regions. Also, prosecutors will have access to other tools in immigration cases.
Human smuggling can be deadly for individuals seeking a way into the United States. One of the most recent tragic incidents claimed the lives of 53 victims. H7 Immigration Bill would establish a mandatory sentence of ten years for individuals convicted of human smuggling.
Legal systems in border towns and cities will also notice an impact from this bill. Included was $100 million to develop projects to enhance security and support economic growth in these communities. Also supported by the funds’ allocation would be the building of detention centers and courts to facilitate the immigration court process.
This new Texas enforcement unit created by the bill will consist of commissioned and noncommissioned employees. Noncommissioned employees are expected to assist with duties such as transportation and additional support services, while only commissioned employees will be allowed to carry firearms. With revisions to the bill, the newly created force will not be confined to the border region, allowing them operational power throughout the state.
Federal crimes have already established that crossing into the United States at any point other than a port of entry is a federal crime. Asylum requests are considered by federal agents, and those seeking asylum are processed in a different manner than others caught crossing. With the formation of a new Texas border force, individuals requesting asylum with state enforcement may face challenges following an arrest.
Recently signed into law were multiple Senate bills allowing for the use of drones by the Texas military to monitor the Texas border. Other laws allow for the coordination of interested states to share intelligence and resources without the approval of Congress. U.S. Border Patrol agents who have completed the Department of Public Safety (DPS) training will be allowed to participate in search, seizure, and arrest procedures at points of entry along the border for offenses considered felonies under Texas law.
Attorney David Breston and the Law Office of David A. Breston remains dedicated to the relentless representation of individuals facing challenging immigration issues. We provide a free consultation to each client regardless of resources. Services in Spanish are also offered to assist in an informative manner.