PIERRE, S.D. — A top South Dakota Board of Regents official says universities shouldn’t play the role of immigration police after a lawmaker proposed banning people who are living in the U.S. illegally from enrolling at the state’s public colleges.
Mike Rush, the regents’ executive director and CEO, says the board doesn’t believe it’s an issue at South Dakota public universities.
Rush says universities don’t make a determination whether a student is in the country illegally. He says that’s a federal determination and regents’ institutions aren’t equipped to make the judgment.
Republican Sen. Stace Nelson’s bill would also declare such people ineligible for resident tuition, scholarships or other financial aid.
It would require the board to develop a method for each school to verify with the federal government an “alien’s lawful presence” in the U.S.