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By Anonymous Mike, pseudonymously.

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Wednesday, December 19, 2007
Footing the Bill

I have read alot of rhetoric over the past few years from the likes of Governor Napolitano and Phoenix Mayor Gordon about how the feds do not pay their fair share of the costs of illegal immigration. They reason that border security is a federal problem so why do they, state and local officials, have to pay for a problem caused by the incompetence of the feds?

This attitude leads to all sorts of political stunts... such as Gordon invoicing the feds over costs incurred from crimes committed by illegals. I guess that's reasonable.

So let's extend the logic.

In the coming fiscal year, the Phoenix Police Department will receive nearly $18 million in grants. It's hard to see from the budget breakout where the money is coming from but I bet alot of it comes from federal agencies. Lest you have any doubt that all of these monies are for fighting federal problems, check out the front page of the Phoenix Police Department's Web site which trumpets the receipt of a $3.7 million grant for "COPS" or Community Oriented Policing Program. This follows some $70 million of such grants awarded over the previous 12 years.

Now unless you have some sort of expanded view of the Commerce Clause or national defense, why on earth should federal taxpayers in Iowa and Maryland pay for community policing in Phoenix?

Okay spare me arguments about pork barreling and federal spending as usual, I have heard them all. What I'm getting at it is that I bet Gordon is more than happy to keep receiving federal dollars for strictly local police projects while blaming the feds for not paying for problems caused by poor policies under the national jurisdiction.

I am sure the costs of illegal immigration far outweigh the benefit from programs such as COPS so let's have Gordon make a grand gesture. Rather than waffling and whining, Gordon should say that Phoenix taxpayers will completely pay for all local policing issues, foregoing all federal aid, in exchange for federal help in fighting crimes caused by illegals.

Let the accountants figure out how to tally up the costs... just do it.