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Pueblo declares it is not a Sanctuary City

But confusion remains about area's status

Pueblo Declares Itself Not a...

PUEBLO, Colo. - Despite reports and belief to the contrary, Pueblo city and county leaders issued a statement Friday that the area is not a Sanctuary City.

The declaration means Pueblo area officials will continue to cooperate with federal authorities in apprehending illegal immigrants, and not risk a loss of federal funding as President Donald Trump has threatened to Sanctuary Cities.

But Friday's release doesn't clear up the matter entirely.

Steve Nawrocki, president of the Pueblo City Council, said he's still uncertain of what implications the controversy could have for the area.

"We really haven't sat down and had that kind of a discussion, at least not in the seven years that I've been on council," he said.  "It doesn't mean within law enforcement that there hasn't been discussion about that."

Nawrocki admits that many local governments -- including his own -- don't have laws, ordinances or legislation to guide them and specify whether they are or aren't a Sanctuary City.

Furthermore, an area's status as a Sanctuary City can fluctuate depending on the opinions of governmental leaders, law enforcement officers and citizens.

According to experts, Trump's threat could pressure cities to avoid Sanctuary City status.

"It can be hard for someone in a city to know if it's really a Sanctuary City or not," Nawrocki said.  "Being such a city isn't good or bad.  Even if we're not, we still are welcoming to all people.  As long as someone who's here illegally is obeying the law, there's nothing to worry about."

Nawrocki said he wants more answers about the situation, and is organizing a meeting with city and county leaders soon.

"We really need to talk about it," he said.  "Discuss it, learn what it really means and how it affects us."

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