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A bill in North Carolina that mandates sheriffs to assist immigration agents is currently being reviewed in the House

Opponents of a measure debated by the North Carolina General Assembly (Via Josh Little/Shutterstock)

Details of a bill that mandates North Carolina sheriffs to honor federal immigration agents’ requests to detain inmates suspected of being in the country illegally are still being worked out in the state legislature.

On Wednesday, the North Carolina House of Representatives decided not to accept amendments made by the state Senate to the bill. This means the legislation will now move to a group of lawmakers who will negotiate its final form.

Rep. Destin Hall, a key Republican sponsor and committee member, indicated that while there may be some adjustments to the language, the core content of the bill is expected to remain unchanged.

House Speaker Tim Moore stated before the vote that he anticipates the House will vote on the revised bill next week.

Ariel Heredia holds a sign that reads in Spanish (Via Pablo Winter/Shutterstock)

Despite some relief over the delay, El Pueblo, a Hispanic advocacy group that opposed the bill, expressed concern in a statement on Wednesday that the legislation still poses a significant threat of becoming law and could negatively impact immigrant communities in North Carolina.

Supporters of the bill argue it will prevent potentially dangerous criminals from being released prematurely.

Under the proposed legislation, sheriffs and jailers across all 100 counties would be required to comply with detainer requests from U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), which involve holding inmates suspected of serious crimes for up to 48 hours.

During its passage through the Senate, several amendments were introduced, including one allowing anyone to file a complaint with the state Attorney General’s Office if they believe an official is not following the law.

Earlier this month, the Senate passed the bill in a party-line vote of 28-16.

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