Dayton ends state's use of E-Verify

Gov. Mark Dayton has dropped a controversial check of work eligibility for state employees and large vendors doing business with the state.

In 2008, Gov. Tim Pawlenty ordered the names of all new hires be run through a Department of Homeland Security database. The program known as E-Verify checks work eligibility in the United States. Vendors doing more than $50,000 worth of business with the state were also affected.

A Dayton administration memo said while the state will continue to comply with federal immigration laws in its hiring, "the E-Verify process has been inefficient and yielded negligible results." In 2009, the state severed its contract with a Texas company hired to do the E-Verify checks after private employee data was found online.

A Republican bill at the Capitol would renew the E-Verify requirement.

Dayton also let lapse Pawlenty directives requiring state law enforcement to cooperate with federal authorities to enforce immigration laws.

Today was the expiration date for 132 executive orders from the Pawlenty administration. Dayton renewed 20 of them. Among the orders was one to require courts to rule on whether to release civilly committing sex offenders. Minnesota uses indefinite commitment of certain sex offenders at state treatment facilities. Courts are considering the release of two violent sex offenders into community treatment programs.

Also left standing were Pawlenty orders to track methamphetamine offenders, make state agencies more veteran-friendly in hiring, and affirming official relationships between the state and Indian tribes.

(The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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