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Beaumont City Council Votes To Oppose Sanctuary Law

BEAUMONT (CBSLA) — The growing movement against California's sanctuary state law has spread to the Inland Empire.

The city council of Beaumont -- a Riverside County city with a population of nearly 37,000 -- voted 3-2 to approve a resolution that declares  Senate Bill 54, the "California Values Act," is incompatible with federal law and, therefore, illegitimate. The vote followed a lengthy debate and impassioned comments from the audience, which filled both chambers and an overflow room.

Tuesday night's vote makes Beaumont the first city in the Inland Empire to join the anti-sanctuary state movement.

Critics of the resolution said that Beaumont should not have gotten involved in the spat between the state of California and the federal government.

"Beaumont doesn't have a dog in this fight. Congress can fix this, not the Beaumont City Council," one woman said.

"This is not something the City of Beaumont or the City Council should be spending city resources on to debate or litigate," another commenter said.

But a citizen who had asked the council to put the issue on the agenda says taking a position wouldn't necessarily cost anything.

"I would like to see them do a resolution to say we support the federal government," Beaumont resident Glenn Stull said. "We believe in law and order, cooperation with the federal government."

More than 60 people spoke to the council -- some local residents, some from other parts of Southern California.

San Diego County's Board of Supervisors voted to support a similar resolution today. The two governing bodies are just the latest to challenge California's sanctuary state law, which protects undocumented immigrants.

The growing number of cities breaking with California's sanctuary law has caught the attention of President Donald Trump.

On Monday night, the city of Los Alamitos became the first city in the state to officially approve an ordinance exempting it from SB 54. Six more Orange County cities and the county itself have since followed suit in crafting anti-sanctuary state ordinances and resolutions.

Beaumont may be the first in the Inland Empire to consider joining the anti-sanctuary state movement, but it likely won't be the last. The cities of Loma Linda, Redlands and Yucaipa may soon be considering anti-SB 54 resolutions of their own.

(© Copyright 2018 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. City News Service contributed to this report.)

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