Here’s the final word on sanctuary status – Franklin County, PA is OFF the list and never should have been on in the first place

May 29 – This has been a long time coming – far longer than it probably should have taken. 

Franklin County, Ohio, was a sanctuary county as listed by the Center for Immigration Studies. The USCIS is the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services and it is a branch of the Department of Homeland Security that looks at immigration. 

Franklin County, PA, was also on that list, but has finally been removed because Franklin County, PA, was not and has never been a sanctuary county

Attorney Clint Barkdoll said, “Franklin County, PA, is undoubtedly glad to be off that list. This has been a thorn in their side for years. The group that generates that list has continued to put Franklin County, PA, on the sanctuary municipality list.”

Keep in mind, nothing is different in our county. 

Barkdoll said, “There’s been no change in policy here. It’s not like there was something new the commissioners did that removed them from the list. My guess is behind the scenes the commissioners assigned some staff to interface with that organization that generates the list, gave them whatever information they needed to finally get Franklin County off the list. So I’m sure the commissioners and county admin are quite happy about this development, finally.”

The commissioners and county administration, worked closely with the Center for Immigration Studies to demonstrate that Franklin County policies are not supportive of a sanctuary designation. Those efforts were successful and Franklin County was removed from the online list late last week, according to the county in a statement today.

“We are appreciative of CIS’s cooperation in resolving this matter and we are grateful to no longer be listed as a sanctuary county,” said Franklin County Commissioner Chairman Dean Horst. “Franklin County has a long history of cooperating with federal immigration authorities and we will continue to cooperate with those authorities to the maximum extent allowed under federal laws.”

Michele Jansen of NewsTalk 103.7FM noted, “It was irresponsible of the Center for Immigration Studies in the first place to cause this controversy, especially when the mix up happened with the state of Ohio’s Franklin County. They should have been more proactive in fixing that narrative. But they are an activist group that tries to push the idea and I think many of us would agree, obviously, the immigration system is being abused and it’s broken. So they tend to have a very low bar for what they consider sanctuary.”

Barkdoll said, “I think the key is if someone’s saying, well, you were a sanctuary, but now you’re not. There’s been no change in policy, which I think confirms what the commissioners had been saying all along. This was erroneous. It’s not like the commissioners passed the new resolution that this group reconsidered what was happening. I’m sure the county is thrilled with it. This, to some extent would even come up in political campaigns and commissioners, the incumbents would often have to defend it saying well, this is inaccurate, but yet it went on for years. It’s not clear why it took this long to get them off the list. But again, it has finally got done.”