Senate panel OKs bill requiring jails to cooperate with ICE
The Senate Judiciary committee debates a bill that would require local jail officials across the state to cooperate with federal immigration agents.
Charles, my Solace, Linda Matthews and Howl Roach. Uh, we're gonna move somewhat out of order today, based on the number of people we have in the room. I do have a few people on, uh, Webcast, Uh, if you are having trouble or if you're having an issue hearing us on Webcast. Uh, please message. Um, our clerk, Miss Emily, is monitoring. So if you have any issue at all with your connection hearing us or seeing what is going on in the committee room, please let us know and we will shoot you. The number two I s D. I'm gonna have Emily send you that now. So you have it so you can call them if you have any issues. First Bill we're gonna here today, I believe has an amendment. Uh, recognize, uh, Senator Edwards on Senate Bill one. Oh, one. Yeah. Thank thank you. Mr. Chair, I do have an amendment. I think everyone here has a copy of that. Uh, if I might explain quickly the the changes that are made in the amendment. Yes, Senator, it was all right, and I appreciate, uh, staff for preparing a very concise summary of that amendment since there are a lot of words on on that page. Uh, this is due to feedback that we received from the North Carolina Sheriff's Association and others, uh, real quick. It would require the ice aquarium individual that is charged with a crime and is in custody when their citizenship status is undetermined. It creates a process for a judicial order for every individual charged with a crime that's held in custody and subject to an ice detainer or administrative warrant. Uh, it requires a judicial official to order that a prisoner subject to a detainer and administrative won't be held in custody for 48 hours or until ice procedure, whichever comes first. And it creates a Class three misdemeanor for willfully failing to query ice or detain someone as required. Lastly, it creates an annual reporting requirement for local confinement facilities to make the General Assembly aware of ice queries, releases etcetera. I submit that to you and ask you to support. Do you remember? Do we have any questions or comments related to the amendment? Senator Marcus, Um, yes, please. Thank you. Mr Chair. Um, if the sponsor of this amendment could just tell us quickly I think it would help me get my bearings. Whether this is the same language that was included in the PCs, it was handed out two weeks ago. Or if this is different from that Senator Edwards. Yeah, Uh, thank you, Mr Chair. Senator Marcus, I don't have that PCs in front of me. And we've worked on a number of iterations of this bill, and so I'm not certain to which one you refer. I can't answer that accurately. Senator Marcus, follow up. Uh, no, thank you, Senator Mohammed. Mr. I just had a question about because it looks It looks like the amendments basically requiring a judicial officer, magistrate or judge Now, um, to basically issue the order to hold someone for 48 hours. So my question is for the bills, monster or staff? Um, can you go over what conditions? Already judges go over before they decide to release someone. Senator Edwards, You want to direct that staff? Yes, Mr. Chairman, That Jennifer Bedford latest love analysis. Thank you. The chapter 15 a criminal code does outline, um, the current criteria for judges to go over the There are long lines of what might create a circumstance where the individual would not appear for court or is a danger to society. And it includes connections to the community. History of flight to avoid prosecution, defendants, family ties, employment. There's a long list of current pretrial release determinations that are laid out in statute for judicial officials to consider. I follow up Senator Mohammed. So is that Miss Bedford? Is that for any judicial official to follow when they're deciding the conditions of release or someone in custody? Ms. Bedford, specifically 15. A Dash 5 34 lays out these conditions when someone is charged with a felony offense. Okay, as far as, uh, for the question for the bill's sponsor, I'm seeing that. It says it creates a class three misdemeanor for willful failure to make that ice inquiry. So who would be responsible in this situation? Is this the sheriff? Like our previous bill that we've seen in this body? Senator Edwards. Yeah, Uh, thank you, Senator. That would be the person that would have been responsible for making the detainer, uh, or checking for whether or not there was a detainer and then making the determination to take that individual to a judicial official essentially will be a misdemeanor for them not performing their duty. And it is very unlike the version of this bill that you saw two years ago. Thank you, Senator Marcus. Yes, Mr Chair. Thank you. I have a question for the sponsored this amendment. It appears to me that this change would eliminate any way for a person to prove that they're a citizen and be released in less than 48 hours. Senator Edwards, my interpretation of this is that that statement would be incorrect. Follow them. I follow up Senator Marcus, once they're identified as is unable to be determined as a legal citizen or a permanent resident. Isn't it true that this amendment requires then an ice determination or the passage of at least 48 hours before they can be released? Senator Robertson? Uh, yeah. Thank you. Thank you, Senator. It would require the person, uh uh to to have a query to see if there is an ice detainer for that individual. Follow up. Follow up, Senator Marcus. And then once that query from local law enforcement is made there now stuck for at least 48 hours or until an ice officer releases or a magistrate makes a decision, regardless of whether they can then produce paperwork showing that they're a citizen or permanent resident. Isn't that right? No. It would not require them to be hailed if there was not a determination. Okay, I'm reading it differently, but I'll drop it for now. Thank you. Okay. Senator Mohammed, uh, question for the bill's sponsor. I see that the amendment now, um, requires ice requires that ice is queried when individuals charged charge a crime is in custody and citizenships. Citizen status is undetermined. So to the bill sponsor, does this mean that someone charged with as we know most crimes are nonviolent offenses in North Carolina? Misdemeanors? What? This mean That someone charged with simple possession of marijuana soliciting arms, um, very minor crimes may be a simple assault with this impact. Those individuals Senator Edwards? No. And if I made Mr Chair, uh, what what this bill would do and I think we may be crossing the line in into the bill, is it would require the query in cases, uh, where someone was brought into jail for the more violent crimes. And those are very specifically specified in the bill Senator Mohammed. Mr. Sherman, I'm looking at the amendment line nine. It says when any person is charged with a criminal offense, I don't see the difference between a misdemeanor or a felony sitting. Mohammed. Uh, Senator Bedford can explain that to you better. Thank you, Mr Edward Jennifer Bedford with Legislative Analysis Division. This version of the amendment does expand to criminal offenses the current laws felony or an impaired driving offense. The amendment expands to all criminal offenses. There was a version that would limit the types of offenses. Okay, under that version, which is not the amendment under that version, a simple possession of marijuana would have qualified. But that is not the version of this amendment, Senator Mohammed. So follow up, Miss Bedford. So what you're saying is now with the amendment. So, for example, would you agree that a simple possession of marijuana is a criminal offense? Yes. So that would make the individual who is charged with the simple possession of Maryland now eligible for this ice hold. That would make the individual eligible for the query to ice. Yes, and follow up, Mr. Chair. Follow. Essentially, if that query is done and it's found that this individual is now an undocumented individual. This would initiate the prices of that ice detainer. Now they would be held for 48 hours. Correct? Yes. Unless ice pick the individual up or the ice relinquished the detainer. And I've got a question for Senator Edwards. Mhm. Senator Edward. It was your intent that the amendment would strike d wi from the list of offenses and maintain the other category of offenses. Is that right? That's exactly right, Mr Chair. That was the intent. Okay, So would you be amenable to an amendment that met that intent? Absolutely. Okay. Thank you. Okay, let's try. Right. Uh huh. Mr. Chair, do you want me to work on that while you hear the other bills or Yeah. We're gonna, uh, displace this bill for just a second, Okay? If we can move to Senate Bill 1 38. Senator Newton, if you would come up to explain the bill. Thank you. Mr Chairman. Centre Galea is going to explain the bill. I do have an amendment that's before the body. I'm happy to explain the amendment whenever you choose. Okay. Um Senator Galen. Thank you, Mr Chairman. Uh, do you want me to address the committee from this seat, or shall I would like you to come up here and you could word language of here. Mhm. Yeah. And, uh, Senator Newton, can you explain your amendment? Yes, Mr Chairman. Thank you. Uh, members, you should all have the the amendment in front of you. It's a very simple, uh, correcting a drafting error. And if you look at the third of the last word in the sentence in quotes or phrase in quotes, we just changed section to act because it's referring to the act which Senator Galea is about to describe. Okay. Does anybody have any questions about this? Mere technical change? The amendment? We have a motion for a favorable. Asked the amendment from Senator Mohammed. Um, all in favor. Say, uh, Senate Bill 1 38 is back before us, Senator gaily to explain the bill. Thank you. Right. But, you know thank you, Mr Chairman. Um, uh huh. So this would this bill would allow remote shareholder meetings for corporations, um, to proceed, as they have been since, um, the beginning of the covid epidemic. This would alter, um, the law to conform to what's become the custom practice through the epidemic, We've all had opportunity to become a lot more, uh, familiar with using remote meetings, platforms, and so that's what this bill would do. So I'm happy to answer any questions to the committee. We have any questions or comments from members of the committee. Have a motion for favorable from Senator Lazar all in favor, say aye, all opposed that is most favorable, as amended, rolled into a new PCs with a serial referral to rules. Uh, we're ready on that amendment or No, it's not quite. Is your chair, Senator nickel Just sort of a related question, and I feel like I saw an email from you on this. Do we have legislation moving on Remote Notary? Is that Is that something that there is something that's moving and it's a companion legislation with the rules chair and some other folks on this side. And there's a fix on some of the remote notarization in the most recent covid bill. Also to carry that date out farther as well. We do have some people that have signed up to speak on Senate Bill, one of the ones if we go back to Senate, Bill one. Oh. One for now. And then we'll come back to the amendment If we can go out and hear from some of the people in the audience. I know some people have traveled quite a way. Um, I know we have, uh, Sheriff McFadden online Who did travel here last time? We also have, uh, Sheriff Baker here from Wake County, who has signed up to speak. Um, Sheriff Baker, if you would like, Would you like to speak on the Senate? Bill one. Oh, one you had signed up. Okay. My family came here now? Yeah. Get yourself put. It seems like we're having some difficulty online. Sheriff Baker, do you have any comments to make on Senate Bill, One of the one Sheriff Baker, Wake County. Put more than Good afternoon my phones going off over there. Excuse it. I hope everyone's well, uh, I don't have much to say. I think we all know where I stand. Uh, here in Wayne County, the potential to spill and, you know, having the ability to to make the decisions that come with being elected to that office. Uh, as you see, I don't know many of you have them out right at the very bottom of the statement that will become forthcoming from with the local amateurs Association Association acknowledges that some shares strongly support this legislation, and some serve strongly oppose it. And I'm a part of those who oppose it. Uh, you know, again, uh, the folks that I represent, the folks who elected me, uh, very strongly about, uh, this office being able to treat people who was out in this county according to the law. No. And I feel very strongly about that as well. The law is going to always take care of those who break it. Mhm. We're going to make sure that that happens. So I am opposed to it very strongly. So thank you. Mhm. Carmen Rodriguez. Carmen Rodriguez Madre immigrant director to mother, immigrant and directly infected by Bill SB one Oh, one. Mental status is familiar while you are all at home. Protecting yourself and protecting your family's not not to be most trabajando, we didn't have a choice. We kept on working Gracias and selling documented. Oh, thanks to so many essential undocumented workers. Nofal Caro messes There were no fruits or vegetables missing in your table. L'Opera, America's most the status are regular seria un poco Kambala, Panda mia and what we heard from you is there's a shift in the pandemic occurred, So an attack is directo para familias are directed tax to separate our families there may look at me, I guess, the one that Mother here's a mother guess CEO who kept Kara and who's here showing her face. Immigrant, the immigrant community. And we keep on working Carolina del Norte Grande to keep on making North Carolina Sheila a race. My name is Shell Arias, Mom's rising North Carolina campaign director. I am here representing each member of Mom's Rising the introduction of Senate Bill one on one in North Carolina. General Assembly said Rewrite or fail to 2019 bill. Extremely hard for for Children's and family, HB one on one. For sheriffs to help. I detain the poor communities. This is called separations of Children and families. But of course you wouldn't know. You don't understand that because you have always had your family with you, they can carry away and trauma, and everywhere they go physical, psychological and more. This is not North Carolina We are a state or family. We are a state that we need to keep everyone united. Everyone is welcome. Families belong together and especially name of lumpectomy that has already taken so many loved ones from immigrant communities. We've seen a hard, far too many stories about impacts of family separation on Children and families. North Carolina should not be in the in the business of tearing families apart. And next I have. Ah, uh, he's still not Eddie called Wealth and Sheriffsassociation. Thank you, Mr Chairman and members of the committee. There's no legislative topic in recent memory that has generated more passionate feelings and opinions on both sides of the issue. Among the sheriff's at issue is the belief of some sheriffs that federal immigration detainers are not legally sufficient to hold a prisoner and the belief of some sheriffs that federal immigration detainers are legally sufficient to hold a prisoner. On April 16th 2019, the sheriff's in attendance at an association business meeting of the membership voted 59 to 3 to support high priority House Bill 3 70 require cooperation with ice detainers, Senate Bill one oh, one of this session with the adoption of today's amendment is substantially similar to House Bill 3 70 from 2019. Therefore, the association's position remains the same. The association appreciates that Senate Bill one oh one is amended today does not include provisions from House Bill 3 70 that would have amended GS 1 28-16 regarding removal from office and required ICE agents be provided access to interview persons in custody of county jails and other local confinement facilities. At a meeting of the association's legislative committee on March 5th, 2021 that lacked a quorum, the sheriff's in attendance voted 9 to 8 to recommend to the association's executive committee that the association adopt no position on Senate Bill one oh one. The executive committee is scheduled to consider this topic at their upcoming meeting tomorrow. March 10th 2021. The association acknowledges that some share strongly support this legislation and that some share strongly oppose this legislation. Mr. Chair, Senator Sanderson. Yes, thank you, Mr Chair, I have a question please for Mr Caldwell If he would mind if you wouldn't mind, he doesn't mind saying okay. Thank you, Mr Caldwell, for being here today, and, uh for the job that you do with the sheriff's Association. Um, you mentioned strongly opposed and and strongly support. How many? How many sheriffs to your knowledge strongly oppose this legislation? Other than the numbers I read from the meetings that we've had, I don't have a head count among the 100 sheriffs either way. Okay. Thank you, sir. Thank you. Okay. Mhm. Yep. Mr. Mr. Yes, sir. Said the moment. I don't know. Sheriff McFadden can hear me. Yes, I can hear you. There you go. Okay. Thank you. Uh, we recognize Sheriff McFadden, Mecklenburg County. Thank you, Senator. Bread. I grant this opportunity and And please, in four months, I will have four decades of law enforcement in this state into during that time. I will have also two decades of law enforcement experience in a homicide investigation unit. So I'm the in Mecklenburg County. I'm the longest reigning detective that Mecklenburg County ever had. So I take somewhat of a fence when someone tells me, um, Sheriff McFadden, if you could hold just one second if you can hear me, I apologize. But we have lost your signal. Uh huh. Sheriff McSpadden. You killed him, then you know, bail bonds. If a federal judge or a district court judge tells me to release someone, it is my duty to release someone with that order. Bill, one of one has a lot of problems. One of the biggest problem is that it's going to cause a problem for a sheriff's budget. So that in in other words, it is called the funding law enforcement. It also brings fears to the community and also having people in our community unable to cooperate with the police. So when we talk about crime victims, both the victim and the defendant, we also should allow both to have their dairy in court instead of allowing someone to simply deport someone before having their day in court. The victim should be able to confront the accuser, and the accuser's should be able to confront the victim in court. And we all know if you know the law that McFadden versus Chavez clearly stated, end us or someone can clear up for me that the state should not have issues with the federal government or tell the federal government what to do in court, and I believe that we can look at that law because that law now has my name on it. And that law causes me to spend money that the federal government did not give back to us. And simply you have to understand. The federal government does have two laws. If they choose to use those two laws which would generate a federal complaint, they are improper entry and also re entry after deportation. The federal government knows well that they could use these two laws to utilize what they need to do to enforce the laws. But it will require them to have a signed document by a legal official in order to have that warrants or criminal complaint produced to us simply meaning that ICE needs to do their job and not expect us to do that job. So here's what we have to understand. Documented, undocumented citizen or no citizen. No one in this country in this state in this county wants to live in fear. And I can tell you nobody wants a crime infested neighborhood, so we have to take a careful look at this and not push us in the corner. North Carolina General Statute 1 62 0.62 mandates me by law to cooperate with ice. And clearly we do that. We do that each and every time ice chooses to make this seems like we don't and we do. So 1 62 0.62. North Carolina law mandates me as sure to cooperate with ice, and we will cooperate with ice in that fashion. So I would tell you this. Yes, there are several people that they're saying that is a future. But I can tell you this the sheriff that opposed us is 80% of North Carolina's population. So I believe that in itself should be a statement. We may be few in number, but we are the largest populated counties in Mecklenburg Charlotte. North Carolina is one of them. So we are the largest major counties in the state of North Carolina. Thank you. Thank you, Sheriff McFadden. I believe. Thank you, sir. Do we have any questions or comments from members of the committee at this time? I know we had the one amendment before us. We've got an amendment to that amendment that is being prepared. There was one small change that I'd asked for that amendment. So you'll be getting a copy of the new amendment to the amendment here shortly. Sitting in Mohammed. Mr. Chair, we still have a discussion on the amendment right now. Okay, So, Mr I have a question for Mr Eddie Campbell with the sheriff's Association. Mr. Caldwell? Mm. Mr Carlo. Carlo, thank you so much for being here. A quick question as far as the amendment. I don't know if you have it in front of you. If he was provided to you, it was okay. If you turn to page two, line 15. Yes, sir. It says if the administrator or the person in charge of the facility, my question to you is in your experience, who's in charge of the county jail? Ultimately, it will be the sheriff. They'll have, in each case, a jail administrator responsible for the day to day operations. Follow up. Follow up. So, Mr Carter, would would it be your understanding that based on the amendment in the bill or the original, So it would be the sheriff? Essentially, that would be charged with a misdemeanor. Well, my understanding of that online when you read line 15 and 16 together. Is that for this, uh, offense to apply the failure to make the query would have to be a willful failure. So if you had a situation where the sheriff had directed his staff to comply with the law and a member of the staff had willfully failed to comply, then it would be the person who had willfully failed to comply. So in that example, the sheriff would not be responsible under this statute. If the sheriff directed his personnel himself or herself not to comply, then the willfulness would be on the part of the sheriff. So the way it's worded here, the way I read it, this willful requirement, uh, looks to who made the decision to not comply with the law. Follow up, Mr. I. Follow up Senator Mohammed. So essentially, if the sheriff, sheriff, Sheriff Baker, Sheriff McMahon or any of our find duly elected sheriffs chose not to willfully comply with the will of the folks that elected them in their own jurisdiction, they would not be charged with the crime. It's my understanding of this provision that anyone responsible for the facility who willfully decides not to comply with the law would be in violation of that section. Follow up again Mr Chair. That followed again earlier, Mr Caldwell, you said that at the end of the day, it's the sheriff that's in charge of the facility. I just wanna make sure I'm getting that correct from you. Yes, sir. That's correct. But if a sheriff directs their staff to comply with the law and a member of the staff against the direction of the sheriff willfully chooses not to comply with the law, then I do not believe the sheriff would be in violation of this provision. Followed. Mr. Chair, I follow up Senator Mohammed. But again, Mr Cottle, if the sheriff is willfully telling his staff not to comply, then they would be charged with the crime. Correct? Yes, sir. If the sheriff who is in charge of the facility to jail if that sheriff willfully direct their personnel not to comply with the law and they would be in violation of this section is my reading of it. Thank you, Mr Carter and Mr Caldwell. Um, what sheriff's reached out to you this time to say they were in opposition of this bill Center? Britt, I'm not sure when you say this time, If you're talking about between now. And when the bill was scheduled the last time, I haven't been directly contacted by any sheriff's, uh, for or against this bill in the last couple of weeks. Other than what I covered in my original statement. Okay. And that was in the version that that went through the house last session. Is that right? I'm not sure I understand your question. I understand about the version that went through the house last time, but help me with your questions, okay? The folks that contacted you when the version went through the house last time, how many people contacted you and express their opposition to the bill? Then, at the association meeting that was held with the sheriff's, the association meeting. The vote was 59 to 3 in support of House Bill 3. 70 from last session. When you ask me how many have contacted me, I talked to sheriff's all the time. Um, various meetings and various topics come up. So I'm not sure what you're asking when you say how many have contacted about this specific bill? Mr. Caldwell, I don't recall any sheriff calling me about this bill in the last several weeks. Uh, other than the meetings that I mentioned in my introductory remarks, the three that were against it in those meetings. What counties did they represent? I don't I don't know. The episode of that. It may be it may be in our records, but I just can't tell you off the top of my head. All right. Thank you. Mr Baker. Sheriff Baker, you had your hand up. Did you want to answer that question? Uh uh. Those who strongly oppose it are the very same ones who suppose it for the first time. And they are the ones that consists of the biggest counties in this state. And they all happen to be African American. That's all that matters. Well, my point is, I've had this discussion recently with almost two Caldwell and several of the other sheriffs amongst the association Uh, the vote and the support that comes from our shirts association that vote that when these matters were voted among and inside the association, well, the majority rules. So the majority, uh, or not African American and they believe the way they do, and that's fine. There's never been an issue with me. The problem is that with us being an audience association. Our vote is never going to to make the difference in some of the matters that the association represents and support. So when it says that the Sheriff's Association supports a bill, well, there are those of us who may not. So it really doesn't matter how we feel. That's what it amounts to what comes out through the end. So I can tell you that Mecklenburg Wake Foresight Gilford uh, bunker, uh, edge Come, uh, all of the same ones who oppose this bill the first time because it basically amounts to legislation and law will be enforced upon us to do something that that we were elected to be able to make a decision to do whether or not we support something. We're going to support ice in this matter to 87 g. It's the same thing. Thank you. Thanks, Sheriff Baker. Okay. The new amendment, I believe, is uh it's ready. Sure. I would follow up. I follow up, Senator Nickel. Sheriff Baker. Um, Chief Baker. Uhh. How much does it cost to detain someone in in your in your jail for each day? Apparently senators anywhere between 40 $50 a day. And that largely depends upon medical expenses that 1 may occur, which could take that particular individual. Oh, daily costs up tremendously, sir. But on average, between 40 50 laws follow up. Follow up. Uh, and does the federal government pay that? No, sir. The following follow up. Who would be responsible for paying that those extra costs that would come out on budget? Thank you, Senator Edwards. Thank you, Mr Chair, may I this time submit this amendment which should clarify those crimes, which were in originally intended two require a query when someone is brought into to jail and for Well, first of all, I'd like to to think the folks that question this amendment. And I think this is a good example of why the community, the community process works so well were able to get this bill down to the intent of the bill sponsors. Uh, I'd also like if you would indulge me for Miss Bedford to be very specific about the crimes that are included in these statutes. So there's no doubt in anyone's mind what this would be. Send him back. Ms. Bedroom. Thank you. Jennifer Bedford with legislative analysis division. The correcting amendment pursuant to Senator Edwards intent as well as the conversation here, would limit the offenses, queried two felony drug offenses. So it would not be simple possession and criminal offenses in Article six of Chapter 14, which is our homicide statutes Article seven B of chapter 14, which is rape and other sex offenses. Article eight of Chapter 14 assaults. Article 10 A of chapter 14, which is human trafficking, and article 13 A of Chapter 14, which is the North Carolina Criminal Gang Suppression Act. Thank you. Thank you, Mr Chair, I would commend this amendment to the amendment to the committee. Okay. Senator Edwards, uh, moves to, uh, moves for the corrected amendment to be approved. All in favor, say aye. All opposed. The eyes have it. The amendment is back before us. The original amendment as, uh, corrected is back before, um, Senator Edwards moves to amend the original bill. Uh, all in favor. Say aye. All opposed the eyes. Have it. The bill, as amended is now back before the committee. Do we have any further questions? Uh, our debate. Senator Mohammed. Mr Shirt. Just inquiry from Bill. Sponsor. Maybe. Or maybe staff. I know Senator Daniels here, and you're here as well. Senator Britain. Um, and I know this wonderful body unanimously passed, uh, the victim's rights amendment, and we figured out the ways to make them move forward. Um, it's my understanding, um, with the victim's rights amendment, which passed with over 60% of voters in North Carolina. And we're all the Tomlinson and Mohammed, I understand. So my question is, Mr Chair, if the individual now is detained in ice custody, they have pending state charges breaking and entering maybe a potential excuse me, a violent crime against a female. Whatever. How do we guarantee that this bill isn't contradicting these constitutional rights that we passed in the victim's rights amendment under Marcie's law? Because now these victims don't get their day in court. Yeah, I think that's correct. But Miss Bedford, that would probably be best directed to the prosecutors in the state so that the conference of DHS could tell you whether they've had an issue with defendants who also have a federal hold on them being taken prior to trial. And so, just for information, if someone is, if they do have the hold on them. Typically, what happens, at least in my district, is there held until the state charges are resolved. Um, they're not normally moved out of that facility. Then they're held until the state charges are resolved. So, Mr Chairman, if I can comment from my experience, what I've seen in Mecklenburg when we had it once an individual's bonds are unsecured under state criminal charges, now the feds will come take them. So now there won't be in court to actually handle those criminal charges because now they've left the country or they're in some other state. So countless times I've spoken to prosecutors where they are unable to prosecute these individuals and give these individuals these victims justice. And Miss Bradford, just find me Mr Mr Chair question, isn't it under the victim's rights amendment that victims have a right to be heard right to be at sentencing, right to receive restitution? How does an individual now that's been deported in ice custody? How does the victim get restitution when that individuals no longer here, that's bad for you. I believe that the amendment to our state constitution into Section 37 the rights of victims of crime that restitution was linked to as allowed by the court. Obviously, if the individual hasn't been convicted, then the court hasn't ordered the restitution. That would be the closest that the case has not come to its conclusion. If the individual has not, in fact been convicted, is the closest I could answer Mr Follow up. So Miss Bedford, if if a defendant does not have his day in court and the victim does not have there day in court, essentially that victim would not receive restitution. Correct. If the case has not been concluded that no restitution would be ordered, it's bad. I've got a question for you. If somebody is deported now, without this bill, prior to resolution of the case, does the victim have their day in court? If there released and deported, the victim's rights concerns that have been expressed would be the exact same as under. Currently Bedford, Do I have any other questions or comments from the committee? We still have one more Be able to hear. Yes, Senator Nickles, A question for the bill sponsor? Yes. Um, yeah. I see. This is labeled cooperation with ice to know I was here the first time around, and I think it's. But my question just involves where we're starting here. Governor Cooper, in pretty pretty stark terms, issued his veto on this. And he said the legislation is simply about scoring partisan political points and using fear to divide North Carolina, the former top law enforcement officer of our state. I know that current law allows the state to jail and prosecute dangerous criminals, regardless of immigration status. Senator Edwards, can you answer this question? I assume he's getting at the fact that do you think Cooper is gonna veto it again? And I guess I guess just you know what's different about this bill other than the fact that it makes sheriff's criminals rather than removing them from office? Have you had any conversation with the governor's office? Do you have any reason to expect that there's going to be a different outcome? Senator Edwards. Thank you, Mr Tara Center, Nickel. Thanks for the question. There are a couple of material things that are different with this bill from from the first. Probably the most significant is the level of crime that would require, uh, right the ice query, as we just discussed in length The second most relevant piece is that this bill would not require the removal of the sheriff from office. The reason that I believe that we should all take another look at this and I'm hoping that you will too. Is that uh huh. We are seeing crime rates escalate in counties that are not cooperating with ice. And I believe that that circumstance in itself causes, uh, reason for alarm and for reconsideration of this bill. And I would certainly hope that you and and the governor, uh, would consider that in in making the next decision one follow up and we need to move to a vote. We have another bill on the calendar. My concern certainly is the wedge you're putting between immigrant communities and elected sheriffs. But in terms of liability, if ice is wrong about a person's immigration status or if they lock lacked probable cause, doesn't this expose our sheriffs to take costly litigation and liability? Is there anything in this bill that would provide payments if we're Senator Edwards? Yeah, Senator Nickel, if I might need a couple of minutes to to to look at the bill. But I do remember that the intent was explicitly to relieve sheriffs of that liability. Okay. And I believe Senator Edwards is willing to work with all all members as this bill moves forward. Uh, Senator Edwards has has moved to amend the bill. The bill, as amended is before us with what we have been debating, Uh, at this time, um, all in favor of the bill. As amended motion for Motion's for a favorable report. The bill, as amended, rolled into a new PCs unfavorable as the original bill with the serial referral. The rules made by Senator Sanderson All in favor, say aye. All opposed the eyes. Have it. Uh, next bill on the calendar is Senate Bill 93. And that might be me to explain. Senator Sanderson, if you can step up here. Mhm, Mhm. Go outside. Okay, we're going to ask those who are in the audience if they would mind giving up their spaces so that folks who would like to be involved in this bill that we're getting ready to address would have the ability to come in. Mhm. Thank you. Do you have a member? Cool. Mm. Okay. All right. We're gonna call before us at this time. Senate Bill 93. Uh, Senator Bridge is going to be explained in the bill. Do you want to run the amendment first? Yeah. All right. Okay. Ground in this field, all of what I do. A lot of what I do in private practice, in addition to criminal law, has been abuse and neglect. Court did abuse and neglect court court for close to 12 years. Oftentimes what I dealt with through the court process, where families that were put on a timetable where they had certain requirements that they had to meet in order to meet the statutory goal of reunification. Oftentimes, they were thrown off that goal from the time they would come into the court process. Because once they would lose legal custody, they would also lose those Medicaid benefits. Uh, the majority of the time, those same cases involved folks needing substance abuse treatment, mental health treatment. Um, So what we came up with is a way to allow them to maintain their Medicaid coverage so that they can seek the mental health treatment, the substance abuse treatment. Uh, this This has ran through the health care committee already. We've talked a lot about trying to move cases through the abuse, neglect dependency process quicker, more efficiently getting these Children back in their families homes where they where they need to be, where we want them to be. And this bill kinda goes towards that goal whenever it came through. Healthcare unanimously the original, uh, bill allowed the Medicaid to expand, uh, solely in circumstances where folks had the mental health diagnosis, substance abuse treatment, diagnosis. Now, that's most of what you're dealing with. Whenever you're dealing with these cases and abuse and neglect cord, you may have other problems that are related to that housing employment. But it all almost always ties back to some sort of mental health or substance abuse issue. Uh, whenever we're working through this in healthcare, uh, Senator heis agreed on an amendment there that we did not have time to have prepared for that committee, but that we were running today that would extend this to any time that a child is placed out of their legal custody. But while complying with the case management plan through a and e court or abuse neglect dependency court, that amendment is what I have here that I would first move to amend the bill. Uh, you should have that amendment before you again. What this does is this allows for a CMS waiver to be requested in states. Legislative intent is that we allow for our the CMS allow for this waiver to be granted for these folks going through this process. Uh, I'll elaborate just a little bit further and tell you that a lot of these cases are taking somewhere close to a year to resolve. So these are Children that are often either in foster care or they're in family placement for over a year. A lot of the delay at the up front of these cases, sometimes 4 to 6 months, are getting into substance abuse treatment. We have folks that are having to get kicked out of substance abuse treatment after being impatient simply because they don't have the coverage to get that treatment. So we're setting them up. Uh, with, uh, we're setting them up without the tools they need to get through the process. So this is a way to help move these cases through the abuse, neglect dependency process quicker to get Children out of foster care quicker and two to help give the parents the tools they need to do that. Thanks, Senator. Bread. Okay, the amendment is before you. We will at this time take questions on the amendment from the members. Okay? Seeing no questions. Uh, you know, a motion for a favorable Senator Mohammed, Thank you for that. Uh, all those in favor of the amendment that would be known by saying aye, all opposed. Likewise. The amendment passes. The bill is back before us, as amended. Would you like to speak again to the bill? As a senator? Sanderson, we do have our I've got to folks that are that are in the audience that had signed up to speak. Miss Valerie Comrie, Um, who worked with me in a lot of these cases, the Department of Health and human. So I mean, uh, Department of Social Services in Robertson County, as well as our, uh, retired chief District Court judge now, Superior Court Judge Stanley Carmichael, who was over our family drug treatment court there in Robinson County. Okay. Thank you. Any order? Um, if not present. Mr. Comrie, if you would approach the podium, please, and state your name and, uh, where you work for the committee. Hi. Good morning. Good afternoon. My name is Valerie Comrie and I'm the program director for the Robinson County Family Treatment Court. We work directly with the Department of Social Services with those families who are struggling with the disease of addiction. Um, Daddy, Senator Britt told me that I only had about two minutes. So I really just want to say that, um, the parents that we work with who do not have Medicaid are truly struggling. He said so much. But what's happening is we'll have a family that enters into a residential treatment facility with her Children, and they end up thriving and doing so well. And I'll have a social work supervisor come to my office and say, Look, Mom doesn't have Medicaid. She has to leave the facility and her Children have to return to foster care. It is so unfortunate that these moms, who are thriving in the facilities that they are in, cannot continue to thrive with their Children and come back to our community and do well. This is exactly what we need for our community. We also have moms who are on medication, assisted treatment, the Suboxone and methadone who lose the Medicaid when they lose custody of their Children. And they can't do well. We had a mom who lost her Medicaid. She was on Suboxone. She ended up on crack cocaine. She was homeless, living outside of a car she was stealing. She was doing things that she would never do all because she lost her Medicaid and the ability to pay for those Suboxone strips that really helped her to thrive and do well. She was on track to get her Children back. And only because of not having Medicaid. We're not sure how long a person can actually end up doing well, But just give us some time to be able to work with these parents. We would just truly, truly, truly appreciate that. Thank you for your time. Thank you, Miss Commerce. Judge Carmichael. Thank you so much for your time. One of the big lies lawyers here. I mean, judges here in court is when a lawyer stands up and says, I'll be brief. Um, Senator Britt told me I must be brief, so I will do my best. Thank you so much. Again. My name is Stan Carmichael. I'm from Lumberton. um, I'm a Superior Court judge right now, is the senator indicated. But for 29 years, I was a district court judge and heard 100 hundreds and hundreds of abuse, neglect, independency, courts. Lots of different ways to count the stats. But when people are honest, probably 75 80 90% of the cases, Children removed, placed in foster care related to substance use disorder. We are in the midst of a crisis, as you know, and we make it worse for families. Children are removed, placed in foster care for all the right reasons, primarily safety, all the right reasons. But at the same time, the first thing we expect the parents to do in court Rule one, as I call it in family Treatment Court, was show up for treatment, show up for treatment and at the same time. Oh, by the way, you've just lost your Medicaid. Good luck finding treatment. It has a horrible impact, and I want to I want to really point out This is a classic example of a bill that will save money by spending money. We calculated it because our drug court was struggling to survive in Robertson county for financial reasons. And the county attorney told the county commissioners, You can't afford for this program to close because of all the related costs that just balloon foster care. In particular, they calculated DSS calculated it by the day, how much we were saving per child. And we can't intervene in those families without treatment. If there was ever a bill whose short title perfectly describes what the outcome would be if this bill is enacted, is assisting North Carolina families in crisis. And we're in the midst of that. Thank you so much for letting me speak today. Thank you, Judge Carmichael. Good job. Okay, The amended bill is back before us as presented. Are there any questions from the committee? Senator Mohammed, Mr. Just wanna have a comment real quick. Um, I just want to say to my fellow senators on this committee, I mean, this is exactly why we're here. That's why exactly where Elected public office to help improve lives and remove barriers. This is the type of legislation that we continue kneading committees like this that improve people's lives. And I want to thank Senator, Brit, Senator Bergen and Senator Chrobotek for giving struggling families. A real opportunity here to heal, move forward and, most importantly, keep our families together. So thank you to each of you. Thank you, Senator Marcus. Thank you. Um, Senator Writ, I don't think anyone in here disagrees. This is a great bill. And thank you for bringing it forward. My understanding is is initially drafted. It was pretty narrow. A lot of concern from DHS that not enough people would be able to take advantage of it. And there were some suggestions for broadening. Is that what the amendment does? The, uh, that's actually inaccurate. The suggestion from DHHS is that as as it would as it was narrowly tailored originally to center around folks that would have to have a substance abuse and mental health diagnosis, there was concern that CMS may not honor that waiver. Um, they didn't have a confirmation from CMS. Rather, they would or not. But there was concern that they may not because of how narrow that was. And that's why we've made it broader here. So that's what follow up? Yes. So that's what the amendment addresses then. I just wanted to make sure that that concern Okay, good. We want as many people to be able to qualify as possible. Thank you. Any other questions? If not, we have a motion for a favorable, uh, to the bill, as amended. Rolled into a new PCs unfavorable as to the original bill with the serial referral to appropriations. All in favor, say Aye. All opposed, like wise guys have it. The bills passed, and we're a journey mhm.