In a victory for the City of Los Angeles, a three-judge panel of the U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals today issued an opinion striking down the Trump Administration's imposition of immigration-related "notice" and "access" conditions on LAPD’s 2017 Byrne Justice Assistance Grant funding for public safety. The conditions, as one judge observed, were an "effort to press state and local police into federal immigration enforcement."
Los Angeles City Attorney Mike Feuer filed this lawsuit in August, 2018, in order to prevent the Trump Administration from holding federal public safety funding hostage to its civil immigration policies. The Administration sought to withhold this important funding from the LAPD unless the City agreed in advance to give the Department of Homeland Security notice of release times of immigrants detained in its correctional facilities, and to give federal agents access to the City’s jails to meet with detained immigrants.
"This is a victory for public safety on our streets, and for the Constitution," said Feuer. "We will continue to fight the Trump Administration's unlawful overreach and to stand up for the best interests of L.A. residents."
The City originally prevailed in federal district court and obtained a preliminary injunction against imposition of the conditions. The Trump Administration appealed, and the Ninth Circuit today affirmed the trial judge's ruling in favor of the City.
The City uses this federal grant funding to support local criminal law enforcement efforts and drug treatment and enforcement programs. The law firm of Covington-Burlington assisted the City Attorney’s Office in this case.