Aurora councilors retract from their anti-immigrant rhetoric

Concejales de Aurora se retractan de su retórica anti-inmigrante Aurora councilors retract from their anti-immigrant rhetoric Aurora Delays Discussion of Anti-Immigrant Measure

NEW RESOLUTION TEXT | Aurora Mayor Mike Coffman; Danielle Jurinsky and Steve Sundber, Aurora councilors. (Photo/ El Comercio de Colorado)


Jesús Sánchez Meleán/ El Comercio de Colorado

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The Aurora City Council will discuss in its session on Monday, February 26th, the resolution project aimed at preventing the financial, public health, and security consequences that the massive influx of new migrants to the city would entail. However, the resolution to be discussed underwent significant modifications since its initial version was presented by councilors Danielle Jurinsky and Steve Sundberg in the Federal, State, and Intergovernmental Relations Committee (FSIR).

The new version, now on the agenda for the February 26th session, focuses solely on demanding that other municipalities or entities, whether public or private, including non-profit organizations, obtain approval from Aurora before transporting new migrants and homeless people to the city. The resolution highlights the need to coordinate the movement of these populations to avoid a negative impact on the city’s finances. Aurora declares itself unable to afford the expenses to assist new migrants.

Negative vote from Curtis

In this way, in the new proposal, the prohibitive and punitive tone against non-profit organizations for providing services and assistance to migrants in general disappears. Every entity, private or non-profit, was required to receive authorization from the city of Aurora before using its resources to facilitate access to housing with “housing vouchers” or provide food, health care, or financial assistance to migrants in general. The previous text had broad and ambiguous language about the scope of this prohibition.

This ambiguity led Councilor Curtis Gardner, also a member of the FSIR like Jurinsky, to refuse to approve the previous text of the resolution at the committee session on Friday, February 16. Gardner indicated that the initial text of the resolution sends contradictory messages about what services could be provided to immigrants. “When calling 911, should the fire department verify someone’s immigration status before providing life-saving medical care?” he asked on Friday, February 16.

Integration of migrants

The new resolution by Jurinsky and Sundberg maintains the assertion that Aurora “takes pride in its identity as the most diverse and global city in the state.” At the same time, the new text removes the mandate that “it would not allocate public funds, services, or staff resources [from the city of Aurora] for migrant support.” This mandate was contradictory to the fact that Aurora is the only city in Colorado, and one of the few in the US, to implement a plan for integrating the migrant community.

The new resolution reiterates that Aurora is not a sanctuary city in the terms of its 2017 resolution. However, Curtis’ questioning and consideration of the impact the resolution could have had on legally present immigrants in the country prompted Jurinsky, Sundberg, and Mayor Coffman, who would have supported the idea of such a resolution, to amend the proposal. Everything indicates that the new version does have the six votes necessary for the city council to approve it.

Knowing the data

In Jurinsky and Sundberg’s new proposal, it is ensured that “[Aurora] has received a large influx of new migrants, many of whom have been transported to the City of Aurora by other municipalities without prior notice and the opportunity to address the financial impact.” It is important that these two councilors, or Mayor Coffman, clarify the number of migrants who have been transported to Aurora, which municipalities have been involved, and on what date the massive influx of migrants to Aurora occurred or was detected.

It would also be important to know if Aurora has already estimated the financial impact of that “large influx of new migrants” mentioned. So far, there is only knowledge of one movement of migrants from Denver to Aurora. According to a report from the Denver Gazette in mid-December 2023, the city of Denver rented all the rooms at the Quality Inn on Abilene Street in Aurora to accommodate migrants. This transaction led to the eviction of some long-term guests.

An employee of Jurinsky makes the complaint

One of these long-term guests at the Quality Inn in Aurora, Joe Sauceda, turned to the press to present his case. Sauceda turned out to be an employee of the Sport Bar & Restaurant owned by Jurinsky. The councilwoman, upon learning of her employee’s complaint, made it known to Mayor Coffman, who contacted Mike Johnston, the mayor of Denver. According to the Denver Gazette’s chronicle, Coffman and Johnston agreed that the migrants would leave the hotel as soon as their “hotel vouchers” expired.

Jurinsky referred to her employee’s case in the committee session on Friday the 16th. However, the councilwoman did not provide any data on the “large influx of new migrants” arriving in Aurora. On the other hand, information related to private or non-profit organizations is also required. The resolution states that there are organizations transporting migrants for temporary accommodation without notifying the city, and that these organizations are causing financial difficulties for Aurora.

Additional questions

Other questions would arise here: Were there other hotels rented by Denver in Aurora? Has the city of Denver located migrants in other types of housing? What are the organizations that are transporting migrants to Aurora, massively and without coordination? What is the estimated financial impact of these migrant movements? Having this data would allow us to understand whether the proposed ordinance is based on data or if, on the contrary, this ordinance originates from the case of Jurinsky’s employee.

HOTEL QUALITY INN IN AURORA| An employee of Councilwoman Danielle Jurinsky, proposer of the resolution on the mass transportation of new migrants to Aurora, was evicted from that hotel. (Photo/Facebook)


Participate in the regular session of the Aurora City Council on Monday, February 26th at 6:30 pm at the Aurora Municipal Center. You can follow the live stream at , or . You can also intervene in the session by registering at www.auroragov/PublicComment before 12 pm on Monday, February 26th.

Read the text of the proposed resolution

From page 90 to page 100

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