Fremont, Nebraska Starts Enforcing Immigration Rules

For Rent signs are seen in Fremont, Neb., Wednesday, April 9, 2014. Under a new ordinance, renters will have to swear they live legally in the U.S. as part of the city's ordinance aimed at combating illegal immigration. Nati Harnik / AP

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Starting Thursday, the city of Fremont, Nebraska is requiring renters to get a $5 permit and swear they have legal permission to live in the U.S. in an attempt to restrict undocumented immigration.

In February almost 60 percent of voters backed for a second time the housing restrictions that also prohibit landlords from renting to anyone without a city permit.

The town of 26,000 residents had first voted for these measures in 2010, but they had not been implemented due to legal challenges. While a Nebraska district court had blocked the rental ordinance from being implemented, saying it preempted federal law, an appeals court reversed the decision.

The Mexican Legal Defense and Education Fund (MALDEF) has filed an appeal to the Supreme Court to hear the case.

"Supreme Court review of the Fremont ordinance is absolutely necessary in this case because the Eighth Circuit's ruling now encourages other states and localities in that region of the country to enact similar laws to expel their immigrant populations, thus, creating a patchwork of immigration policies that will diminish the federal government's control over the subject," according to MALDEF Midwest Regional Counsel, Alonzo Rivas.