Georgia’s State Legislature recently approved a new immigration bill (HB 87 - Illegal Immigration Reform and Enforcement Act of 2011) but it has yet to be signed into law by Governor Deal. AJC 4/15/11. This new bill is similar to the much publicized Arizona immigration bill, with a few changes.
Similar to Arizona, the Georgia bill allows local law enforcement to demand documentation of residency. It also empowers police to detain people they reasonably suspect are here illegally. NYTtimes 4/16/11. The Georgia bill also establishes an Immigration Enforcement Review Board to investigate complaints about those same enforcements.
Unlike the Arizona bill, the Georgia bill softens the requirements for the federal E-Verify program and requires the investigation into a State run guest worker program by the state Agriculture Department.
Opponents to the bill state that it will lead to discrimination and harassment towards Georgia immigrants. Those in support of the bill state that the Georgia bill does not supersede federal immigration law, but puts more enforcement power into local governments.
Information about Atlanta’s current immigration law can be found at Atlanta's Immigration Court Website.