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Posted at 11:15 AM ET, 06/ 7/2010

It’s every county for itself

By Paige Winfield Cunningham

Albert Dwoskin hired a security guard one year ago to keep some Guatemalan immigrants -- some legal, some not – from loitering on his property as they waited to be picked up for day labor. Store owners in his Centreville shopping center had complained that customers were bothered by them.

Now, Dwoskin wants to instead send the men to a trailer set up nearby, where they can register and be hired by contractors in a more orderly fashion.

Hundreds of residents turned out to a Tuesday evening meeting to protest the center, saying it could contribute to traffic and crime problems. Supporters say it’s just a pragmatic approach to a problem that isn’t going away anytime soon.

Just about everyone acknowledges the problem is ultimately the fault of a weak U.S. Customs and Immigration Enforcement, whose arm isn’t strong enough to do anything about the illegals already sitting in jail -- let alone shoo all of the well-intentioned, hardworking-but-still-illegal immigrants back to their homeland.

In the face of federal languor, it’s every locality for itself. Counties facing higher costs to educate and care for the health of illegals are going to do what they can to discourage settlement within their borders, and rightly so.

But the debate rages over whether a day-laborer center will neatly pack illegal workers out of sight and out of mind, or turn Centreville into a more attractive place for illegals to live.

[Continue reading this piece by Paige Cunningham on Old Dominion Watchdog here.]

Paige Winfield Cunningham is an investigative reporter and managing editor at Old Dominion Watchdog . The Local Blog Network is a group of bloggers from around the D.C. region who have agreed to make regular contributions to All Opinions Are Local.

By Paige Winfield Cunningham  | June 7, 2010; 11:15 AM ET
Categories:  HotTopic, Local blog network, Virginia  
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Comments

Exactly what authority would Dwoskin use to force the day laborers to use the hiring center instead of congregating on the road? If the county does not have the authority to make them disperse now, how could they force them to disperse once the trailer is in place? And if they do have the authority, why don't they just do so? Oh wait, I know; contractors give campaign contributions, and rich people like to have cheap labor available to tend their yards and clean their houses. I would really like to know how much free work Supervisor Frey has gotten done on his house in exchange for backing this plan to facilitate illegal activities.

Posted by: exgovgirl | June 7, 2010 1:37 PM | Report abuse

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