The Virginia Senate passed House Bill (HB) 481, an anti-sanctuary bill requiring law enforcement to comply with detainer requests issued by the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). HB 481 also takes the important step of compensating any person injured by a criminal alien released in violation of its provisions. The Virginia Senate approved HB 481 by a 21-19 vote. The House of Delegates already approved the measure earlier last month. Governor Terry McAuliffe must now approve HB 481 before it can become law. Governor McAuliffe has not yet commented on HB 481 but is likely to veto the measure.
HB 481 is not the only bill that the Virginia General Assembly is considering to support the enforcement of immigration law. Last month, the Virginia Senate also passed Senate Bill (SB) 270. SB 270 prohibits localities from enacting any ordinance, procedure, or policy that restricts the enforcement of federal immigration law, and strips funding from any locality that nonetheless adopts a sanctuary policy. SB 270 passed the House Criminal Law Subcommittee for the House Committee for Courts of Justice on Monday, February 29, and is awaiting consideration by the full House of Delegates.