Sanctuary Cities Get a Win on Law Enforcement Grants


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The injunction preventing the Department of Justice from withholding them from certain cities is back in place.

The 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Wednesday lifted the stay of a preliminary injunction that stops the Department of Justice from withholding law enforcement grants from sanctuary cities.

U.S. District Judge Harry Leinenweber issued the stay, limiting the ruling to Chicago, pending a full appeals court review of a nationwide injunction.

But the appeals court found the case, City of Chicago v. Sessions, had no bearing on another case where the U.S. Conference of Mayors is suing Attorney General Jeff Sessions over the same grant issue.

“[T]he injunction is limited to the parties actually before the court who have demonstrated a right to the relief,” reads the appeals court order. “The concern with the pending City of Chicago case therefore was unfounded.”

The parties before the court include the city of Evanston, Illinois and members of the Conference of Mayors, all of which sought the injunction as a way to bar the federal government from imposing conditions on Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant awards tied to immigration enforcement.

The Department of Justice attempted to stipulate that state and local governments must prove they don’t restrict information sharing with federal enforcement concerning a person’s immigration status, provide notice prior to releasing criminal undocumented immigrants from jail, and permit the Department of Homeland Security to access jails. Only then would their grant awards be disbursed.

Dave Nyczepir is a News Editor at Government Executive’s Route Fifty and is based in Washington, D.C.

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