Waterford Michigan Township has approved a measure to stop the federal government resettlement of Syrian refugees to their Township until reforms are in place to provide better vetting of these refugees, The Detroit News is reporting.

The Township board passed a resolution that cited testimony in front of Congress:

that refugees from failed states such as Syria cannot be adequately vetted to ensure that they do not have terrorist ties because the necessary records do not exist.

The problem is the people, which mean us, opinion does not count when it comes to the resettlement of refugees. Michigan just like all other states cannot legally ban refugees into their city, township or state.


The federal government has total jurisdiction over where they want to place refugees, they do not care what the citizens of any municipality wants.

Help could be on the way via a federal bill currently in the U.S. House of Representatives would allow local communities to opt out.  The Refugee Program Integrity Relocation Act of 2016:

would allow local communities the ability to say that we don’t want Refugees resettled in their community and it would let Congress the ability to set a number and establish the process and conditions as to how Refugees are allowed in.

The concern or Waterford Township and other municipalities is not without warrant.  As one Waterford Township Trustee noted there are many :

gaps in communication between federal vendors and local governments and schools prior to the placement,” as well as “significant unfunded financial burdens for receiving states, counties and local communities to provide public assistance to meet refugee needs for schools, law enforcement, housing and health care.

Waterford Township’s resolution calls for the township to:

not actively participate in the Refugee Resettlement Program until the program has been significantly reformed, and unit it has been demonstrated that the townships of Oakland County have the capacity to absorb refugees without diverting funds from needy residents or exposing their residents to unwarranted security risks.

Should local cities, townships and states have the ability to decide if they want refugees to be settled in their municipalities?  Why should the federal government have the ability to not care what local governments and their citizen’s want?

Is this the direction in which you want our federal government to go?  What will the federal government decide next that the lower governments have no say over?

Let’s talk about this today on The Live with Renk Show which airs Monday through Friday 9 a.m. to noon. To let me know your thoughts during the show please call (269) 441-9595.