The third and last of three fact-finding hearings convened by the Florida Senate Judiciary Committee on proposed crackdown legislation on illegal immigration takes place Monday afternoon in Tallahassee.
To say that the proposed legislation, sponsored in the House by Republican Will Snyder and in the Senate by Bradenton's Mike Bennett, is controversial in the Sunshine State, would be a bit of an understatement. And it didn't really help the cause when Senator Bennett said last month that he might not even vote for his own proposal.
The final Judiciary Committee hearing comes after a Pew report released last week showed a 230,000 drop in Florida's illegal immigration numbers — the most dramatic decrease of any state in the country.
But Stuart Representative Will Snyder was not deterred upon learning that news, saying:
"The illegal immigrant population in Florida is still a substantial one, estimated by the Pew Hispanic Center to currently be 825,000," Snyder said. "I think it is important that we address illegal immigration in the upcoming 2011 Legislative session, and I will continue to gather public input and build a consensus on the best way to implement comprehensive immigration reform that will ultimately reduce illegal immigration into our state."