In March, underscoring its status as an inclusive city, the Palm Springs City Council approved a resolution in support of Dreamers and called on federal representatives to reach a legislative agreement on the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. Two months later, the Council is bolstering its support for inclusivity.

The City Council on Wednesday voted unanimously to become the first city in Riverside County and the Inland Empire to join a list of other California cities in an amicus brief to support three pro-immigrant state laws. The laws include the state sanctuary law, which is currently subject to a legal challenge by the Trump Administration.

An amicus brief is a legal document filed in appellate court cases by non-litigants with a keen interest in the subject matter. The brief advises the court of relevant, additional information or arguments that the court might wish to consider.

The state laws being challenged include:

  • SB 54 – The California Values Act, otherwise known as the state sanctuary law, which prohibits local law enforcement involvement in federal immigration enforcement
  • AB 450 – Provides protections for immigrant workers
  • AB 103 – Prohibits extended detention of undocumented immigrants and allows for the State Attorney General to monitor conditions of federal immigration detention facilities

Councilmembers Geoff Kors and Christy Gilbert Holstege initiated the request that the city join the amicus brief, which is being led by the ACLU of Southern California.

“It is important that the city of Palm Springs takes a leadership role in supporting our immigrant population, who are the backbone of our local economy,” said Holstege said in a prepared statement. “We’re here to stand up for California values and we’re here to stand up for Palm Springs values. It is important that everyone feels safe in our city and our state.”

Holstege also led the charge on the DACA resolution and well writing the resolution.

Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy has reported that undocumented immigrants in California paid $2.2 billion in state and local taxes in 2010, including $1.8 billion in sales taxes and $302 million in property taxes.

“Palm Springs is proud to send a message to our immigrant community that we are here for them and we are going to stand up for their rights,” Kors said in a prepared statement. “Our values demand that we protect and welcome everyone who sets foot in our city and we are proud to support the rights of our immigrant population.”