Washington, D.C. – The House Judiciary Committee today approved a bill by a vote of 15-8 to authorize the premier federal immigration enforcement agency.

The U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE)Authorization Act (H.R. 2406), authored by Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.), authorizes ICE for the first time in law and ensures a core mission is the enforcement of our nation’s immigration laws. Notably, the bill makes targeted reforms to both Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) within ICE to maximize their efficiency and effectiveness. It also codifies the Victims of Immigration Crime Engagement Office (VOICE), an office created by the Trump Administration to provide access to information and resources to victims of crimes committed by removable aliens as well as to the families of victims.

House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte issued the following statement on today’s Committee approval of the ICE Authorization Act.

“The United States is a nation of immigrants but we are also a nation of laws. If we enforce our immigration laws now, we will help deter illegal immigration in the future. We have a duty to ensure our immigration laws are enforced, operate efficiently, and work in the national interest. Immigration and Customs Enforcement has never been authorized in the law, and it’s past time that we do so. My bill ensures a core mission of ICE is to enforce our immigration laws in order to protect public safety and national security, and to maintain the integrity of our immigration system. This bill, coupled with the Davis-Oliver Act and others, ensures ICE has the tools needed to carry out its mission.”

A summary of the ICE Authorization Act can be found here.

For more on today’s markup, click here.