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Cobb BOC Rejects IMAGE Certification Program

The vote was 3-2 against the proposal.

Contractors who want to do business with Cobb County will not be required to apply for certification through a federal program intended to stop undocumented workers from obtaining employment through fraudulent means. 

It was standing-room only at the Cobb County administration building Tuesday night. And despite passionate arguments from speaker after speaker in favor of the proposed code change, county commissioners decided that the federal IMAGE program was not the best way to solve unemployment or the issue of illegal workers in Cobb.

"That objective can be obtained through quite a few different ways," Chairman Tim Lee said before the board voted 3-2 against the ICE (U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement) Mutual Agreement between Government and Employers program. "... I think this is bad policy today. There are other ways to skin a cat to get to the issue. This is too much without any quantifiable results."

As expected, the only officials who supported the proposed code change were the co-sponsors of the ordinance, District 2 Commissioner Bob Ott and District 3 Commissioner JoAnn Birrell. Lee, District 1 Commissioner Helen Goreham and District 4 Commissioner Lisa Cupid all voted against it.

Norm DeWalt of North Cobb told the board that the "vote ... is nothing more than supporting economic terrorism."

Jan Barton of Marietta called it a "vote for illegal workers."

D.A. King of the Dustin Inman Society and other residents said Georgia has a "serious" illegal immigration problem, which is why they supported IMAGE. 

"I want my children to be employed," said Patricia Hay of Mableton. "I want legal residents of the United States to be employed. You're voting to have illegal aliens have jobs over legal citizens."

Backers also said that the program would safeguard the county from embarrassing incidents that have rocked Cobb in recent years.

During the construction of the new Cobb courthouse, information surfaced that a contractor on the project had not verified the status of his employees. At one point, the contractor and the brickmasons who worked for him were pulled off of the job, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

And just this week, a WSB-TV report showed that unauthorized workers may have helped build a fire station in the city of Smyrna.

"We again are hiring illegal aliens to build our buildings," said Susan Stanton, who lives in an unincorporated section of Cobb near Kennesaw. "It's time we put our foot down. Protect our people, our workers."

Richard "the Equalizer" Pellegrino February 27, 2013 at 04:32 AM
Bravo to the BOC for doing the right thing and not bowing to the extremists and alarmists who say the sky is falling, and not bowing to ICE, which is in many ways a "big brother" rogue federal agency. I am only sorry that they wasted so much time on this non-issue. The fact is that the undocumented immigrants are not taking jobs away from citizens in Cobb and in fact they are creating jobs for citizens here though the money they spend and taxes they pay. That is already a known and proven fact through independent studies performed around the country--studies that the fear mongers and those who pander to them conveniently never mention. I will state this offer again, which I have been making for years, and not one of these complainers has ever taken advantage of : through my extensive network of business contacts I will help anyone get a job who even feels that he/she has been displaced by an immigrant.
G. Mitchell February 27, 2013 at 04:44 AM
Sounds like Tim Lee is on the side of Cobb Chamber yet again. So Chairman Lee, if there is "more than one way to skin a cat"..then what is your suggestion? This is simply ridiculous.
E M GREEN February 27, 2013 at 08:31 AM
I Agree with the Chair Lee also. The ICE program has a poor record to me. Last year they sent a Texas lost teen to a South American country. She was found by her Grandmother a year later with the help of Facebook with a slave classification from this So American place & Pregnant.
BGB February 27, 2013 at 10:55 AM
"I will help anyone get a job who even feels that he/she has been displaced by an immigrant." - It would be nice if you started by getting a real job for yourself
L A Hays February 27, 2013 at 12:10 PM
Let's see: Repubs want smaller government except when they don't; do I have that right?
Melinda Paris February 27, 2013 at 12:49 PM
I'm glad Big brother got shut down / I would like to know what jobs illegals have taken away in this county? I've run a company without illegals for years BUT I've had job openings that go unfulfilled because Americans snarl at the idea of hard work and sweating , and Work ethic's have gone down the toilets in this country and as Uncle Si would say that's the facts, Jack!
Richard "the Equalizer" Pellegrino February 27, 2013 at 02:35 PM
Ha, ha,ha ....unlike some others I have refused to take money for my advocacy work (so I am beholden to no one) and the very reason I can get other people jobs is because of my job and business (marketing and management consulting)...so BGB if you have too much time on your hands judging others I can certainly be of help :-).
jMichael February 27, 2013 at 03:48 PM
Don't you realize that you're spoiling all the fun? Race-driven scapegoating, after all, is the only fun -save for bowling- that some of these folks have.
Lissa M. February 27, 2013 at 05:14 PM
Get rid of all the govt. handouts and see how many American's enjoy "hard work and sweating". As my Grandfather used to say "If you don't work, you don't eat".
Lissa M. February 27, 2013 at 05:16 PM
Do you ever get tired of hearing your own rhetoric or is it just everyone else who tires of you?
Byron Rangitsch February 27, 2013 at 08:46 PM
Good advice, Lissa. It's certainly working for Somalia.
Observer February 27, 2013 at 09:35 PM
In other news. A Texas high school student has filed a federal lawsuit against her school and her teachers after she was punished for refusing to salute and recite the Mexican pledge of allegiance. Brenda Brinsdon is sueing the McAllen Independent School District for violating the 15-year-old girl’s constitutional rights when she was forced to recite the Mexican pledge and sing the Mexican national anthem.
Richard "the Equalizer" Pellegrino February 28, 2013 at 05:37 AM
I'm sure there is more to the story than that, if it is even true and not an internet rumor. But even if true, I'm sure it happens so often to be an issue of concern.
Brian February 28, 2013 at 07:33 AM
Prevent immigrants - legal or not - from getting jobs, and what do you get? Crime.
Lissa M. February 28, 2013 at 02:44 PM
Don't forget that Mr. P. is still asserting that anyone who doesn't follow his warped ideology is not really "Hispanic", so don't try to confuse him with "facts". Ms. Martinez
Lissa M. February 28, 2013 at 02:45 PM
There is an enormous difference between immigrants being "legal or not". There is right way to do it, as many of our friends and relatives have vs. being an illegal "victim".
Lissa M. February 28, 2013 at 02:47 PM
Dear Byron, Did you mean Somalia or Mississippi?
Observer February 28, 2013 at 03:15 PM
That it even happens a single time is an issue of concern, Richard. By the way, the parents of the 14 year old are legal immigrants from Mexico. The student considers herself to be 100% American and refused to recite the Mexican pledge, which got her punished by the teacher.
Richard "the Equalizer" Pellegrino February 28, 2013 at 03:36 PM
Sorry Lissa but I stand up for humans, including you, and I don't really care or have a clue as to who or what is "Hispanic". Regarding your vast difference between being legal or not, again, I don't believe any human is "illegal" and don't judge. Each of the 12 million cases and individuals is just that--a unique situation--which no one can or should judge, (That is why we have a court system and govt.) If I/we were to get into judging each neighbor's status and who breaks the law then that would be a slippery slope indeed--and that is what needs to be avoided. Millions of undocumented immigrants founded this country, including many Europeans, Africans, Asians....and the recent wave were invited here again for cheap labor and now that we are having economic crises we want to scapegoat them. That is un-American, inhumane, un-Christian and just plain wrong.
Richard "the Equalizer" Pellegrino February 28, 2013 at 03:36 PM
Wise words indeed!
Observer February 28, 2013 at 09:16 PM
A man much wiser than you RIchard, Milton Friedman said that you can have open borders or you can have the welfare state, but you cannot have both. The sky must really be interesting in your land of Unicorns and Rainbows.
Richard "the Equalizer" Pellegrino March 01, 2013 at 05:48 AM
Hmmm Observer....you had better get some better vision-wear for your observations because no one I know is promoting either open borders or a welfare state--both of which are extreme positions that are not represented by the societal reforms I advocate (which I will be happy to share with you in more detail, if you are interested, either here or directly at pilgrim1@mindspring.com ).
Observer March 01, 2013 at 05:28 PM
Richard, you need to stop reading Rousseau and start reading Huntington. Your martyr complex is getting the better of you.

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