Published September 03, 2013
Fox News Latino

Stickers of the 2006 immigration battle in Hazleton still remain near the town's city hall. (Photo: Andrew O'Reilly)

The mayor of a Pennsylvania city that grabbed national headlines with strict immigration laws that a federal court declared unconstitutional said that the municipality will appeal the ruling.

Hazleton Mayor Joseph Yannuzzi said that the city plans to appeal a ruling made by the Third Circuit Court of Appeals several weeks ago calling the Illegal Immigration Relief Act and rental ordinances unconstitutional, according to the Standard Speaker, a local newspaper.

The municipal laws, which Yannuzzi said he is prepared to fight for in the U.S. Supreme Court, seek to drive out undocumented immigrants by making it impossible for them to rent in town or work for local businesses.

"We've got to get this to a conclusion one way or the other," Yannuzzi said, according to the newspaper. "It's seven years going on eight. Let's get this done with."

Long before states such as Arizona put a global spotlight on the tensions in the United States between local and federal officials over illegal immigration, Hazleton, Pa. officials sought to take the matter into their own hands through laws targeted at undocumented immigrants.

But amid the court battles, the ordinances never have been enforced.

The lead attorney on Hazleton’s behalf is a nationally known immigration hardliner, Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach.

Kobach, who has authored many anti-illegal-immigration laws and ordinances across the country, including that of Arizona, is quoted in the Standard Speaker as saying that there is a "better than average" chance that the U.S. Supreme Court would hear Hazleton’s appeal of the Third Circuit Court ruling.

“Kobach said that the Third Circuit Court ruling that declares Hazleton's ordinances unconstitutional conflicts with a ruling from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit regarding a similar law in Fremont, Neb.,” the newspaper said.

Kobach – who also was the attorney fighting for Fremont’s anti-illegal immigration ordinances – said that while the Third Circuit Court deemed Hazleton’s laws unconstitutional, the Eighth Circuit Court ruled that laws in the Nebraska city were valid.

The newspaper noted that Hazleton has 90 days from when the Third Circuit Court ruling to ask the U.S. Supreme Court to hear an appeal.

"The Supreme Court is not bound to grant or deny the petition within a certain time," Kobach said, according to the newspaper.