Riverton, Utah, Mayor Trent Staggs released a statement Thursday saying he was “horrified to learn” that the state had been declared a sanctuary state by the Salt Lake City Field Office of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) earlier this year.

Staggs was just as horrified over the reason — ICE cited lack of support from state and local officials for the designation.

“Public service is a public trust to uphold the laws duly enacted. We must rectify all limitations and restrictions in Utah that impede ICE from enforcing our nation’s immigration laws,” Staggs wrote.

Staggs was reacting to an ICE memo with the subject line, “Sanctuary State Designation for the State of Utah,” dated May 31, 2023.

Salt Lake City Field Office Director Michael Bernacke authored the memo and in it, unilaterally made that decision in the memo:

“I am designating the State of Utah as a sanctuary state,” wrote Bernacke. (Excerpt from NEWSMAX.)


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