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Crib Sheet: February 19th, 2017

The FAKE NEWS media (failing @nytimes, @NBCNews, @ABC, @CBS, @CNN) is not my enemy, it is the enemy of the American People! President Trump blasting the media in a tweet Friday, sparking plenty of backlash[1][2]

The Crib Sheet is a collection of stories, events, and ideas that are shaping the conversation in New Mexico and D.C. politics.

[New Mexico]
  • The Democrats unveiled a tax package[3] that would generate an estimated $197 million for the coming fiscal year. Earlier in the same day lawmakers were told the state is on track to take in roughly $123 million less in revenue in the coming year , even after the budget cuts enacted last fall.
  • In response to an AP report that claimed the Trump administration was considering using the National Guard in deportations, Representative Bill McCamley of Las Cruces introduced a bill[4] that would disallow the New Mexico National Guard from using its resources on immigration raids brought forth by the federal government. Last week ICE arrested five immigrants in Albuquerque[5].
  • The push to expand background checks on gun sales is drawing big spending[6] by lobbying groups on both sides of the issue.
  • A Senate committee on Friday approved a bill[7] to allow qualified New Mexico residents to register to vote up until three days before an election at certain locations. As I have covered in the past, the Democrats push to expand the voter rolls[8] evidently fails to mention any effort to maintain the integrity of the voter rolls.
  • House Republicans on Thursday voted to block a bill[9] that would have made it a felony for public water systems to lie to the state Environment Department over concerns that the bill was vague.
  • In a setback for the New Mexico Office of the Public Defender, a judge rejected arguments[10] by public defense attorneys that they are too overloaded with work to provide adequate representation to poor defendants facing jail time.
  • The population of endangered Mexican wolves is up over last year[11] according to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
[D.C.]
  • A draft memo acquired by the AP[12] revealed that U.S. Department of Homeland Security was, as recently as February 10th, considering a proposal to mobilize as many as 100,000 National Guard troops to round up unauthorized immigrants in four states including New Mexico. The Trump administration strongly denied the report, with Press Secretary Sean Spicer saying the report was 100% not true. It is false . Some viewed the leak of the memo as evidence that anonymous bureaucrats are intent on undermining the Trump administration.
  • The FBI is looking into[13] at least three separate probes relating to alleged Russian hacking of the U.S. presidential elections . Members of the Senate Intelligence Committee met with FBI Director Comey[14] for over two hours on Friday.
  • Trump is at his Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida this weekend where he will interview four candidates[15] to replace Michael Flynn.
  • Senator Tom Udall and other Democratic senators are demanding John Roth[16], the Inspector General of the Department of Homeland Security, investigate whether Trump s Mar-a-Lago trips violate the emoluments clause of the United States Constitution (and are a conflict of interest).
  • Congresswoman Michelle Lujan Grisham met with the head of ICE Thursday[17] but left unsatisfied and wants more information about current strategy ; some of her fellow House Dems attempted to join the meeting but were turned away[18].
  • Both of New Mexico s Senators are also jumping into the immigration fray[19].
  • Yesterday Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly[20] signed sweeping new guidelines that empower federal authorities to more aggressively detain and deport illegal immigrants inside the United States and at the border.
  • On Friday Congressman Steve Pearce got some unfavorable coverage in a Fox News report[21] that said staffers from the Congressman s office where playing hide-and-seek with constituents . The protests appear to be part of a nationwide effort by anti-Trump activists[22]. The seven term Congressman won reelection in 2016 with 63% of the vote.
  • Some economists are worried that President Trump s plan to introduce tariffs on imports could cause a spike in inflation[23].
  • An opinion piece in the New York Times[24] explains why the lucrative U.S. heroin market will not be stopped by Trump s promise of a border wall.
[Tech & Strategy]
[Culture]
  • Actor Shia LaBeouf brought his anti-Trump livestreaming art piece [29] to New Mexico.
  • Incendiary right-wing author and lecturer Milo Yiannopoulos appeared on HBO s Real Time with Bill Maher on Friday. A video of the panel confronting Milo is here[30] but be warned, the show contains strong language. On Saturday it was announced[31] that Milo will deliver a keynote address at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) next month in D.C.

References

  1. ^ blasting the media (thehill.com)
  2. ^ plenty of backlash (www.chicagotribune.com)
  3. ^ unveiled a tax package (www.abqjournal.com)
  4. ^ introduced a bill (www.kob.com)
  5. ^ arrested five immigrants in Albuquerque (www.santafenewmexican.com)
  6. ^ is drawing big spending (www.santafenewmexican.com)
  7. ^ on Friday approved a bill (www.lcsun-news.com)
  8. ^ Democrats push to expand the voter rolls (www.nmpolitico.com)
  9. ^ voted to block a bill (www.santafenewmexican.com)
  10. ^ a judge rejected arguments (krqe.com)
  11. ^ is up over last year (www.abqjournal.com)
  12. ^ draft memo acquired by the AP (www.latimes.com)
  13. ^ FBI is looking into (www.businessinsider.com)
  14. ^ met with FBI Director Comey (www.rollcall.com)
  15. ^ where he will interview four candidates (thehill.com)
  16. ^ are demanding John Roth (twitter.com)
  17. ^ met with the head of ICE Thursday (www.abqjournal.com)
  18. ^ were turned away (www.rollcall.com)
  19. ^ are also jumping into the immigration fray (twitter.com)
  20. ^ Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly (www.washingtonpost.com)
  21. ^ in a Fox News report (www.foxnews.com)
  22. ^ a nationwide effort by anti-Trump activists (nypost.com)
  23. ^ could cause a spike in inflation (www.businessinsider.com)
  24. ^ opinion piece in the New York Times (www.nytimes.com)
  25. ^ reached a new yearly investment record in 2016 (www.abqjournal.com)
  26. ^ is in high demand by tech firms (www.buzzfeed.com)
  27. ^ looking at five key states (www.rollcall.com)
  28. ^ delivered some powerful remarks (time.com)
  29. ^ anti-Trump livestreaming art piece (www.engadget.com)
  30. ^ here (www.youtube.com)
  31. ^ it was announced (thehill.com)

Uncertainty on immigration enforcement looms in Northwest Arkansas

Mayors, sheriffs and some immigrants in Northwest Arkansas are apprehensive about President Donald Trump’s executive order expanding federal duties to local law enforcement. Trump signed an executive order last month allowing local and state law enforcement officials to perform the duties of federal immigration officers when it comes to the investigation, apprehension or detention of residents living in the country without valid visas. Snapshot

Washington County had 14 inmates being held for Immigration and Customs Enforcement out of 648 total at 4:30 p.m. Wednesday.

Benton County had six inmates being held for Immigration and Customs Enforcement out of 545 total at 1:30 p.m. Thursday.

Source: Staff report

Web watch

Read the Jan. 25 executive order:

bit.ly/immigrationorder

Local police agencies would take on those duties through a federal program scaled back under President Barack Obama’s administration.

“It’s a hot topic for a lot of people,” said Benton County Sheriff Shawn Holloway. He echoed his Washington County counterpart by adding he wants more information before deciding whether to have deputies in the field take part in the program.

“I think there can be good in the program, but unless the program’s run correctly, there can be a lot of damage done to families,” he said. Trump’s order comes amid several moves to enforce or tighten immigration enforcement. A separate executive order calls for adding to the 650 miles of wall on the 2,000-mile-long border between the United States and Mexico. Another section of the same order calls for the end of the “catch and release” practice of the Border Patrol in which agents routinely allow people caught crossing the border to go free shortly after apprehension.

Trump has ordered eligibility be revoked for federal grants, except as “deemed necessary” for law enforcement purposes, to “sanctuary cities.” The term refers to jurisdictions declining to jail people based solely on immigration status, according to the Washington Post. The New York Times reported more than 600 arrests in at least 11 states over the second week in February. The arrests have sparked fears of more widespread raids, though the U.S. Department of Homeland Security maintained the arrests were in line with previous directives under the Obama administration to prioritize immigrants with violent or otherwise extensive criminal histories. Hundreds of people, some with no criminal histories other than not having valid visas, have been arrested around the country this month by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, according to multiple news outlets.

The Associated Press reported Friday the Trump administration has considered a proposal to send as many as 100,000 National Guard troops to round up unauthorized immigrants in several states, including Arkansas. Tom Byrd, public affairs officer with Immigration and Customs Enforcement in New Orleans, said comments and statistics related to executive orders must come through the Department of Homeland Security.

“Right now, we still haven’t gotten the specific guidance as to what we’re supposed to do with the executive orders,” he said. About 30,000 people without valid visas called Northwest Arkansas home in 2014, according to estimates from the Pew Research Center, a nonpartisan organization that conducts data-driven social science research.

Local enforcement

Section 287(g) of the Immigration and Nationality Act for two decades has allowed police and sheriff’s departments to screen people for immigration violations in the field, at local jails or both, essentially giving local officers federal powers. The field aspect is referred to as the task force option, while screenings only after an arrest at the jail is the detention option. If someone is flagged by federal databases after encountering police, he can be turned over to Immigration and Customs Enforcement for possible deportation. The executive order about law enforcement reinstates the Secure Communities program, which Obama replaced in 2014. Under Secure Communities, detention officers submit biometric data, or fingerprints, through the rungs of federal records.

Almost 600 people picked up by agencies in Benton and Washington counties were deported under Secure Communities between 2008 and 2015, according to the Center for Immigration Studies, a national group supporting increased immigration restrictions. Benton and Washington counties and Springdale and Rogers police participated in the task force option of 287(g) until Obama replaced it in 2013 with the Priority Enforcement Program. That program only sought deportation if the inmate had been convicted of certain offenses, participated in organized criminal gang activity or posed a danger to national security. The detention aspect of the program includes 38 agencies in 16 states, according to the customs enforcement website. Benton and Washington counties are the only agencies in the state participating.

Washington County Sheriff Tim Helder said the task force model of 287(g) in which his office previously participated worked well.

“We would welcome dialogue with ICE on resurrecting the task force to target criminal aliens,” Helder said, adding he wants to know how the program would affect the often crowded county detention center. “No one from ICE has contacted us yet, but I imagine they will once they get their arms wrapped around President Trump’s orders.”

Chief Deputy Jay Cantrell said the office previously had a group of deputies who would focus on checking the immigration status of people suspected of drug trafficking or other serious criminal activity. Reviving the task force option in Washington County wouldn’t mean every deputy would patrol for people living in the country illegally, Cantrell said.

“It’s got to be an offense serious enough to get them into jail,” he said. “A broken tail light typically wouldn’t do that.”

Holloway, who once worked as liaison to federal immigration agents while at the Rogers Police Department, saw the most likely scenario as federal agents asking for assistance from local jurisdictions for actions such as serving warrants, transports or the occasional SWAT operation.

“I don’t see them asking us to be the main investigative body of it,” Holloway said. “They have so many employees now, to be honest, if they can’t do it with what they’ve got, they’ve got problems.”

Local concerns

Trump’s law enforcement order has found less interest among the region’s four biggest cities. Fayetteville Mayor Lioneld Jordan said he discussed the task force model with Police Chief Greg Tabor. It didn’t interest Jordan a few years ago, and it doesn’t interest him now, he said.

The idea easily could lead to a perception of racial profiling, said Jordan, who’s working on a “welcoming city plan” to help new residents and immigrants immerse themselves in the community.

“My police officers have got plenty to do without being immigration officers as well,” he said. Mayor Doug Sprouse of Springdale said the city had no plans to rejoin 287(g). Rogers Mayor Greg Hines said immigration falls under the federal government’s purview.

“We currently are involved in a number of federal task forces, and are not pursuing joining another task force at this time,” Hines said, imploring Congress to fix a “dysfunctional” immigration system. He added the city would assist federal law enforcement if needed. Bentonville Mayor Bob McCaslin said he didn’t see a need to devote local police resources to such a program.

The recent arrests and possibility of expanded local enforcement meanwhile has sent rumors and fears through immigrant communities, advocates and immigration lawyers said.

“People are definitely scared. I’m getting more and more consultations asking me, ‘What’s going to happen to my case?'” said Laura Ferner, a lawyer in Springdale. “With a lot of the people, I have to say, I don’t know what’s going to happen because we just don’t know.”

So far, it appears Immigration and Customs Enforcement hasn’t ramped up its activity in Northwest Arkansas, said Mireya Reith, executive director of the Arkansas United Community Coalition. She said the coalition has seen more activity in central Arkansas, though Little Rock Police Chief Kenton Buckner said his department’s policy of focusing on people committing felonies still stands. K. Drew Devenport, a lawyer and interim head of the University of Arkansas free immigration law clinic, said he’s told clients to consider the potential risk when signing up for or renewing Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, an Obama program giving temporary work visas to people brought into the country illegally as children. Trump hasn’t rescinded the program and hasn’t taken a firm stance on it, but several deferred action recipients in Northwest Arkansas declined to give interviews, wary of drawing attention to themselves in case the program is reversed.

“I think we got kind of complacent,” Devenport said of the program, urging people with questions to consult with experts rather than listening to rumors about raids or new policies.

The Immigrant Resource Center in Springdale, run by the community coalition and Catholic Charities of Arkansas, is hosting regular “Know Your Rights” seminars about what to do if immigration agents come knocking. Earlier this month, speakers advised immigrants not to open the door unless the agents have a signed warrant and not to talk to investigators or sign anything without a lawyer present.

Connie Hernandez of Springdale attended one of the presentations and said she planned to pass on what she learned to several close friends who have received deferred action approval.

“A lot of people are very worried,” she said. “They are very scared about being sent back when they’ve been here all their lives.”

NW News on 02/19/2017

WV Travel Team: Make the airport security experience fast and easy

WV Travel Team: Make The Airport Security Experience Fast And Easy

Courtesy photo

A passenger airplane is refueled and loaded with cargo before a flight.

WV Travel Team: Make The Airport Security Experience Fast And Easy

Courtesy photo

Travelers work their way through pre-flight security Oct. 4, 2014, at Reagan National Airport in Washington, D.C. Through years of frequent travel, I feel I m fairly accomplished at being prepared for airport security and usually make it through the security checkpoint in pretty quick time. Normally, I employ this strategy to get through airport security:

n I check my boarding pass to see if I had the unexpected surprise of receiving TSA PreCheck.

n I scan the lanes to see which appears to be going the fastest, and I pick lines that have fewer first-time travelers or families that might be unsure of Transportation Security Administration practices.

n I wear clothes that allow me to get through security faster, including slip-on shoes.

n I also wait to put on my watch until after I m through security.

n I double-check to make sure I have everything after I exit the security lane before heading to my gate. On a recent trip, I thought I had made a strong choice for a fast-moving lane. That was until I realized I was behind a magician who was going to attempt to put a case of live doves through the X-Ray machine. But it was too late. I had already committed to the lane and was prepared to view the heated discussion between the passenger and the TSA agent.

While my experience with the magician and doves is less than typical, there is a lot you can do to prepare yourself for airport security to make things go as quickly and smoothly as possible.

Get packing

Having an organized packing process can make your TSA experience much easier. To begin your packing process, check with your airline to view what carry-on baggage allowances are allowed on your flight. For most domestic flights, the general maximum size for a carry-on bag is 22-inches-by14-inches-by9-inches. In addition, passengers are allowed a personal item, such as a purse or laptop bag, that can be stowed under the seat in front of them or in an overhead compartment. When packing, keep in mind that if you re on a smaller regional jet, such as a CRJ200, your larger carry-on roller bag will likely be valet checked. This means as you enter the jet bridge during the boarding process, your bag will be taken by an airline employee and will be stowed under the plane.

Upon arrival at your destination, it will be waiting for you in the jet bridge as you leave the plane. As a result, make sure you do not pack any medicine, important travel documents, car keys or other valued items in your larger carry-on in the unlikely event your bag gets lost. AAA tip: Always put something on the exterior of your roller bag so you can identify it quickly among the other valet bags, such as a neon luggage tag or ribbon. Nothing is more difficult than finding your black roller bag in a sea of 12 identical bags. Another rule that is important to note as you pack is the liquids rule. Per the TSA, passengers are allowed a quart-sized bag of liquids, aerosols, gels, creams and pastes in their carry-on that will be screened at the airport security checkpoint.

Each liquid item must be less than 3.4 ounces, excluding medicine and breast milk. When packing, put your bag of liquids in an easily accessible place, as it will need to be removed during the X-ray process. AAA TIP: Pressure changes during flight can often cause your liquid items to leak from their containers. Consider placing sticky liquids in an additional plastic bag before placing them in your quart-sized bag to avoid a potential mess. Also, consider using a product such as a GoToob for your liquids that is made from a more flexible material than standard plastic that can withstand pressure changes.

As you pack a carry-on, also be sure to check www.TSA.gov[1] for a current list of items prohibited from being placed in a carry-on. This can include items such as firearms, certain scissors or tools. I ve personally found during my packing process I like to have specific homes for items that need to come out of my bag during security screenings or that I want quick access to at the airport. I always make sure I have an exterior pocket in my briefcase for my cellphone, keys, ear buds and travel documents, so I have quick access to them.

What not to wear

As you pack, it s also important to pre-select the right outfit for the airport. Whether you re traveling for business or pleasure, wearing the right attire can expedite the security screening process at the airport. Unless you have TSA Pre-Check, all passengers must remove their shoes at security. As a result, selecting a slip-on shoe will make the security process faster. Avoid wearing flip-flops or sandals if you re a germaphobe, as you ll be going barefoot through security otherwise.

As you go through security, you will be asked to remove any coats or heavy sweaters to send them through the X-ray machine consider keeping these items in your carry-on bag until you get through security to make things easier. It s also worth employing a similar strategy for jewelry that could require additional screening.

Get in line

One of the most common questions AAA travel agents hear is, When should I be at the airport? It s not an easy question to answer, as there are a lot of factors that can influence this answer. Typically for domestic flights, passengers should arrive at the airport 90 minutes to two hours before their scheduled departure. This does not include the extra time it may take to park, or to take a shuttle to the terminal. For international flights, arrive at the airport three hours before your scheduled departure. As you prepare for the line at security, make sure you have two things in your hand and ready to go: your identification (driver s license or passport) and your boarding pass. Both will be required prior to going through security screening. Check your boarding pass occasionally, you may get lucky and receive complimentary TSA PreCheck.

AAA TIP: If you have trouble keeping track of a paper boarding pass, consider downloading your airline s mobile app. Here, you can check in for your flight and view your mobile boarding pass, which security will accept. Once you have clearance to go through security screening, choose your line carefully. As you stand in line, pay close attention to which lines are moving the fastest. If you re in a hurry, consider avoiding lines with first-time flyers or families with young children that may take longer for security to screen. Also, pay close attention to what TSA agents are telling passengers as they may have different instructions from airport to airport. By listening to their instructions early, you can prepare for your security check while you wait in line.

Security screening

Once you select your line, it s time to prepare for the actual security screening. Make sure you remove all items from your pockets, as even a boarding pass or a coin on your person could trigger additional security screenings. As you clean out your pockets, consider having a designated pocket in your carry-on bag where you can quickly stow items so you can quickly get them back out after security. While directions may vary slightly from airport to airport, be prepared to remove your belt, shoes and any heavy sweater or coat these items will be X-rayed. In addition, if you carry a laptop, be sure to send it through the X-ray machine in its own bin. Once your items have entered the X-ray machine, stand in the designated line for your full body scan. Be sure to follow the TSA agents instructions as you move through this portion of security, and be sure to let them know if you have a medical condition that prohibits you from going through the full-body scan alternative security checks can be made available for you in this case.

Following your security screening, be sure to collect all of your belongings, including your boarding pass. As you repack your carry-on or personal item, it s easy to leave items on a bench, so double-check the area before you proceed to your gate.

An intentional insurance policy

Many frequent air travelers prefer to skip the hassle of security by enrolling in TSA PreCheck. For $85 for a five-year membership, you can enroll in the program and use a dedicated line at security that allows you to keep your shoes, belt and jacket on. In addition, you don t have to remove your laptop or liquids from your carry-on. While the added convenience is nice for travelers, I know many less-frequent travelers who use TSA PreCheck as an insurance policy of sorts. As the TSA PreCheck lines are generally much faster than standard airport security checkpoints, this can save you time if you re running late for a flight. As a traveler who has encountered a flat tire on the way to the airport, it can be nice to recoup some time if you encounter an unexpected situation on the way to the airport. Apply online at www.TSA.gov[2] and schedule an appointment at an enrollment center across the country. During your 10-minute in-person appointment, a TSA official will run a background check and take your fingerprints. Upon completion, you will be given a Known Traveler Number that can be applied to your future air tickets, giving you TSA PreCheck clearance.

For personalized assistance in planning your next travel adventure, stop by the AAA Charleston office or call one of the AAA travel professionals Janice Adkins, Lia Ireland, Amy Sisson, Becky Wallace and Barbara Wing at 304-925-1136.

References

  1. ^ www.TSA.gov (www.TSA.gov)
  2. ^ www.TSA.gov (www.TSA.gov)
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