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Your Views: Sheriffs 287(g) program hurts Hall Countys economy
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It's time for Sheriff Cronic to stop using 287(g) as a deportation scheme; the taxpayers can't afford it. This should come as no surprise. Yet the sheriff said he didn't believe the program would have a major impact on Hall County's economy. Perhaps some see this as progress.

However, the people who have invested in Hall County by buying rental homes, apartments or opening stores and other businesses are taking a beating. But it isn't just investors and business people, it's every taxpayer.

The recent Times article exposed the huge loss of county revenues due to 287(g). How many of the 28 people terminated could have kept their jobs? How much have the enforced furloughs of county employees hurt those families caught in the shortage?

Figures for the city court are equally dramatic.

Arrests are down in the sheriff's office. How many hours have been spent in heavily Hispanic areas doing traffic stops?

On March 4, Committee on Homeland Security Chairman Bennie G. Thompson, D-Miss., delivered the following prepared remarks for the full committee hearing called Examining 287(g): The Role of State and Local Law Enforcement in Immigration Law: "In the last three years, the 287(g) program's budget has increased from $5 million to $60 million. Like everyone else, I applaud the growth of successful programs. But the record is incomplete at best, as to whether this program is a success.

"For instance, in 2008, it was credited with resulting in the removal of about 29,000. It's budget for fiscal year 2008 was just under $40 million. ($1,379.31 cost per person). To determine whether this was a prudent way to spend the taxpayer's money, we would need to know whether the people removed were dangerous aliens."

More importantly, Frank Norton of The Norton Agency real estate has estimated that 20,000 Hispanics left Hall County in the past year. If he's correct, that's a lot of tax revenue and consumer spending that 287(g) has helped chase away.

However, the loss of a large number of people from our working population and increasing unemployment clearly demonstrates that available jobs are not produced by fewer people working.

The 287(g) program didn't create the recession, but its implementation at this time demonstrates either a total lack of economic wisdom or a complete disregard for the people of Hall County.

David M. Anderson
Gainesville

Should non-Americans receive insurance?
The article on page 4A in Wednesday's paper, supplied by the Associated Press on the proposed health insurance plan, says the plan makes health insurance a right and responsibility for all Americans. And then it goes on to say nearly half benefiting from this plan are illegal immigrants.

What? And this on the same day that we hear that the Hall County Sheriff's Department is doing a great job in sending arrested illegal immigrants to ICE. I must have fallen down the hole in "Alice in Wonderland" because nothing seems to make sense any more.

What logic gives American rights to illegal immigrants? Maybe it is time to stop the insanity, but I don't know how we do it.

Marilyn Valent
Oakwood

Obama badmouths America while traveling in Europe
President Barack Obama is my president. I did not vote for him. I do not like his policies and his move toward socialism. I pray for the man as all Christians should pray for their government leaders (See Romans 13:1).

No football coach ever runs down his team in the media. If he does, his players will lose respect for him and it will affect their play. No CEO ever runs down his company or its products. No state governor will publicly badmouth his state or her citizens.

Yet, our president has badmouthed you, me and our nation publicly all over Europe. Does he not know that we rescued Europe from German aggression in two wars? Does he not know how we rebuilt Europe after World War II using the Marshall Plan?

Yes, there are those over there who do not like us because we are a rich nation made that way by hard work under the capitalistic system. Spell that free enterprise. Yet, he badmouths us before the world.

Obama has a winning smile and a glib tongue, but he is not a leader. He is not a leader. Yes, the House and Senate kowtow to him and we are sliding into deep trouble. I hope and pray that in 2012 we, Americans who love our nation and her heritage, will rise up and vote him and many in the Congress out of office.

George C. Kaulbach
Cornelia

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