Sanctuary cities lawsuit heads to first court appearance in SA

City of San Antonio, others seek preliminary injunction for SB 4

By Garrett Brnger - Reporter

SAN ANTONIO - There's already been a mountain of paperwork, but Monday will be the first, actual court appearance for the plaintiffs in a lawsuit against the new "sanctuary cities" bill.

While the goal of opponents to Texas Senate Bill 4 is to ultimately have it ruled unconstitutional, the hearing at San Antonio's Federal Courthouse will be about getting the SB 4 at least temporarily put on ice. The law is scheduled to take effect Sept. 1, but a preliminary injunction would prevent that while the court is considering the lawsuit.

RELATED: SA officials split over controversial sanctuary cities ban lawsuit

Luis Vera, a lawyer for the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC), which is one of the plaintiffs, said they will have to prove the law would cause irreparable harm if it goes into effect. That the state wouldn't be harmed by keeping the status quo, and that the lawsuit has a likelihood of success.

The list of plaintiffs now includes the cities of San Antonio, Austin and Dallas, with Houston joining, too. However, it was a small border city, El Cenizo, that filed first.

"It's a little bit nerve-wracking because we just don't know what to expect," said El Cenizo Mayor Raul Reyes. "I for one can tell you all the plaintiffs will be there in show of support."

READ MORE: Abbott signs sanctuary cities bill into law

SB 4 allows local law enforcement to ask about people's immigration status and comply with federal immigration officers. Local leaders in San Antonio have said the law could cause numerous problems including racial profiling.

The federal government has also weighed in on the case, supporting the State of Texas. It will present a statement in tomorrow's hearing, too.

CONTINUING COVERAGE:

McManus: 'Nothing positive' about sanctuary cities ban law

Federal government supports Texas in SB 4 lawsuit

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