I’ve become weary of the Chicago-style attacks on some of our commissioners over their objection to the IMAGE-mandating ordinance proposed by Commissioners Bob Ott and JoAnn Birrell.
Led by D.A. King and aspiring political candidate Keli Gambrill, the editorial pages of the MDJ have become the place for some to toss around false accusations without any supporting evidence. Commissioner Goreham seems to have become their primary target. King wants her out of office and Gambrill wants her job.
Many others have chimed-in with echoing remarks, most with little sign of knowledge of the IMAGE program or of the existing laws and regulations enforcing the federal work authorization program.
We already have strict federal and state laws requiring every employer to examine and verify the eligibility of all hires. Cobb County has carried those laws forward into all of its contracts, requiring all bidders to submit an affidavit swearing their compliance with the Georgia Security and Immigration Compliance Act. One must wonder which contractors would be fool enough to violate the federal laws, state laws and their sworn affidavit with the county to risk employment of illegals.
IMAGE is a voluntary federal program which prescribes a set of practices for employers to follow to improve their ability to screen for fraudulent documentation presented by illegals. The program includes training and self-auditing processes which, if followed, should relieve the federal government of some of their auditing responsibilities. IMAGE is a good program and, hopefully, will be adopted by most employers.
However, the county’s proposed ordinance to mandate an employer’s participation in a voluntary federal program can only be viewed as arrogant, bureaucratic and intrusive. The existing laws and regulations are more than sufficient enforcements. The ordinance proposal should be dropped.
Editor’s note: Mr. Welden served as campaign chairman for Mrs. Goreham during her 2010 campaign for commissioner.