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Another court nixes Trump push to cut 'sanctuary city' funds

 Downtown Rochester skyline view.
Max Schulte
Downtown Rochester skyline view.

NEW YORK (AP & WXXI News)  A federal judge says the Trump administration can't withhold over $29 million from six states and New York City in a clash over their immigration policies as so-called "sanctuary" jurisdictions.

Friday's decision involves Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Rhode Island, Virginia and Washington state, and the state and city of New York.

Other federal courts have issued similar rulings.

The government imposed new conditions last year on a public safety grant. The new requirements included telling federal agents when immigrants in the country illegally are getting out of custody.

U.S. District Judge Edgardo Ramos says the conditions are unconstitutional.

The federal Department of Justice declined to comment. Democratic New York Attorney General Barbara Underwood says withholding the money was "a political attack at the expense of our public safety."

Governor Andrew Cuomo calls the ruling “a victory for New Yorkers and for the safety of our communities.”  He says the ‘Byrne-JAG’ public safety grants play an essential role in combatting gun violence.

Rochester is a ‘sanctuary city,’ with City Council approving a measure affirming that status last year, saying that while the city will follow the law, it will not directly be part of federal efforts to look for undocumented immigrants.

Randy Gorbman is WXXI's director of news and public affairs. Randy manages the day-to-day operations of WXXI News on radio, television, and online.