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Banning illegal immigrant renters pricey, divisive

Texas city spends 5 years, nearly $5M trying to ban illegal immigrant renters; locals divided By The Associated Press

FARMERS BRANCH, Texas (AP) ' The Dallas suburb of Farmers Branch has spent five years and nearly $5 million trying to ban illegal immigrants from renting apartments in the city.

Court challenges have kept the law from taking effect, including a federal appeals court ruling last week. Yet city officials say they're likely to press on.

The fight has pushed the city, a quiet collection of bedroom communities and office parks, into the national illegal immigration debate. Local Latinos say it also has made legal immigrants and U.S. citizens feel unwelcome in Farmers Branch, where Latino populations have fallen in recent years.

City officials and law backers argue illegal immigrants strain schools and police resources. They also note that local voters supported an early version of the law five years ago by a 2-to-1 margin.

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Related Keywords:Illegal Immigrants-Texas,Immigration,Social issues,Social affairs

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