Austin And San Antonio Join The Legal Battle Against ‘Sanctuary Cities’ Ban

Our daily roundup of Texas headlines.

By Becky FogelJune 2, 2017 12:45 pm

The Standard’s news roundup gives you a quick hit of interesting, sometimes irreverent, and breaking news stories from all over the state.

San Antonio and Austin are joining other Texas jurisdictions, including Maverick and El Paso Counties, in fighting the state’s so-called ‘sanctuary cities’ ban in court.

University of Houston Political Science Professor Brandon Rottinghaus says courts probably won’t be persuaded by the number of lawsuits.

“The one thing that this can be effective in doing though is that individual groups and individual people who are opposed to the sanctuary cities legislation can pool their resources, and that can be useful for the lengthy legal fight that this is likely to become,” he says.

The Legislature passed Senate Bill 4 last month and it takes effect in September. SB4 requires local officials to honor all warrantless requests from federal immigration officials to detain suspected unauthorized immigrants booked into jail, even if they’re otherwise cleared for release.

It also prevents local police departments from banning an officer from asking someone who’s been detained about their immigration status.


Some residents of Lamar County found themselves in the dark earlier this week.

KETR’S Scott Morgan reports from Commerce:

If you live in Lamar County and [are] a customer of the Lamar Electric Cooperative and you lost power between Wednesday and Thursday, it was snakes that did it. Yes, your hearing is just fine: snakes cut your power.

The cooperative’s substation in Reno was visited by snakes looking to dine on the many birds’ eggs in nests that show up at the station in spring.

The cooperative said on its Facebook page that bird-repelling measures and snake fences are in place to prevent such problems. But the station just found itself slightly overwhelmed by hungry snakes.

The slithery diners cut power to residents in Reno, Blossom, Pattonville, Novice, Powderly and Detroit for several hours, but the cooperative says all has been restored.

Starting in 2020, Texans will no longer be able to vote for every candidate from a single political party with the push of a button.

Gov. Greg Abbott signed a bill Thursday that eliminates straight-ticket voting.

Proponents of Rep. Ron Simmons’ (R-Carrollton) bill said it will compel voters to make more informed decisions at the polls.

But Democrats didn’t like the legislation, arguing it will have a disproportionate impact on minority voters.

The Texas Tribune reports a federal judge in Michigan blocked a similar law from going into effect in that state last year.