STATE IMPLEMENTS ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION DETERRENTS
NEW CONTRACT LANGUAGE HOLDS STATE CONTRACTORS ACCOUNTABLE FOR PERSONNEL
NASHVILLE, TN – In accordance with Governor Bredesen’s 41st Executive Order, Finance and Administration Commissioner Dave Goetz today released new state contract language requiring companies that do business with the State of Tennessee to certify that they do not hire illegal immigrants. Governor Phil Bredesen issued the Executive Order on September 5, ordering the state to put in place rules to prohibit contractors from employing illegal immigrants. The Order affects all state contracts initiated on or after October 1, 2006.
The Order directs the state to assure compliance with Public Chapter 878, signed into law by the Governor on June 15, 2006. Although the Public Chapter, passed by the General Assembly this year, does not take effect until January 1, 2007, the Order directs that many of its provisions be implemented immediately.
“Just as we work hard to ensure that state services do not go to people who are not lawfully entitled to them, these provisions will help ensure that state business does not go to companies that evade the law and employ illegal immigrants,” Bredesen said. “Illegal immigration is a serious and complicated issue and this is one common sense way that we can help address it while we await federal action.”
The Order prohibits the state or any state entity from contracting with anyone who knowingly uses services of illegal immigrants in the performance of the contract. Contractors found in violation of the order would face penalties and could lose all state contracts, as well as be placed on a disbarment list preventing them from seeking state business for one year.
Contractors will be required to attest they - nor any subcontractors used – are not employing the services of illegal immigrants in the performance of the contracts. Contractors are subject to random checks of their personnel records to ensure compliance.
Provisions of the Order will be implemented by the Department of Finance and Administration, which will also assist other state departments and agencies in carrying out the new rules.
The state annually enters into approximately 2,500 contracts: About 600 are Department of Transportation (TDOT) contracts; another 1,300 are contracts for specific goods through the Department of General Services; and, about 600 are professional service or construction related contracts.