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Amendment gives local authority near border

An amendment to the House's border enforcement bill that passed last week gives local authorities jurisdiction over immigration laws within 100 miles of the border. Chad Pergram has more from Capitol

Authorizing local law enforcement authorities to enforce federal immigration laws has long been a contentious issue. An amendment to the House's border enforcement bill that passed last week gives local authorities jurisdiction over immigration laws within one hundred miles of the border. Republican Southern California representative John Campbell authored the amendment. Chad Pergram has more from Capitol Hill.

Municipal statues in Los Angeles, San Francisco and Fresno, prohibit police from reporting illegal immigrants to the department of homeland security.

Campbell's amendment changes that. And if cities don't turn in illegal immigrants, the Government would withhold federal grants for law enforcement.

Campbell: "It makes no sense to me that you would prohibit law enforcement officers from reporting to the Federal government of a violationof federal law when they see one."

It's rare when such a junior lawmaker is able to score such a major legislative victory. But Campbell says his experience in Sacramento helped him maneuver his plan through the house.

Campbell: "I've spent five years in the California State Legislature and this is the big leagues. But the California Legislature is probably 'Triple A.'"

The house bill also includes a measure to build a fence along the U.S. Mexico border. But Campbell says it's important to enforce immigration laws, not just at the border, but deeper inside the country.

From Capitol hill, Chad Pergram. KPBS news.