July 6-- The mayor of Uvalda is party to the federal law suit challenging Georgia's new immigration law.
Mayor Paul Bridges says he was "outraged" when he read House Bill 87 which passed the legislature and took effect July 1st.
He believes U.S. borders should be secured and the millions of people who have entered the country illegally should be given amnesty.
"I do believe we should close our borders, but I believe also that the people who have incorporated our culture and become a part of our society have a method to stay here and remain a part of our society with their children and with their other relatives who may have or may not have papers," he says.
Mayor Bridges and various immigration groups, labor unions and individuals are part of a class action law suit filed by the Southern Poverty Law Center in Montgomery, Alabama. A federal judge has already issued an injunction against enforcement of two parts of the law.
Mayor Bridges would likes to see a federal answer to the country's immigration dilemma. "I believe the federal government should create a workable immigration reform policy and enforce it. It should be enforced by agents who are trained to deal with the issues which are so complex and surround this entire immigration idea," he says.
As mayor of a small town in rural Georgia, Mayor Bridges thinks the bill will hurt the region's economy.
"There are several farmers who've been on the news lately talking about they simply don't have the labor force needed to continue their businesses. I've been doing some research and I find documentation that the Latino community provides a good bit of economic growth and their contribution is tremendous looking at the state as a whole," Mayor Bridges says.