One of the fastest growing communities in our area is dealing with some significant and difficult growth issues. Community leaders in Mason, Deerfield Township, and Warren County want business owners to know exactly what they can and can't do in regards to illegal aliens.

Local 12's Rich Jaffe says local leaders are trying to get in front of a growing national issue that's clearly being felt on the local level.

There's a concerted effort to revitalize downtown Mason, but with that growth is coming some growing pains as well. The Pleasure Inn has been the focus of a legal battle because of controversial signs in the window. Another local bar was the scene of Kevin Barnhill's murder at the hands of two illegals in August of last year.

Clearly with growth is coming problems... so on Tuesday November 13, city, county, and township leaders will host a seminar for business owners and residents, designed to answer four key questions.

Char Pelfrey, Mayor of Mason: "How to identify illegal aliens in the work force? What if I'm employing an illegal alien, what might be the ramifications? What steps can I take to safeguard my business? What authority does law enforcement have?"

When you imagine downtown Mason, you must also imagine a growing population of Hispanics in this community. All across Warren County there are increasing numbers of Latino's, and they are generally found in small enclaves or pockets. Here in Mason, that enclave is so pronounced that local law enforcement refers to one particular apartment complex as "Little Mexico."

Warren County Sheriff's Deputies hope to soon have federal arrest powers to help with immigration issues, just one more example of local solutions to a national problem.

Major John Newsom, Warren County Sheriff's Department: "I think this is great that the elected officials and the people empowered by the public go forward with this, dragging everybody else along with them. It's where we need to be. The federal government obviously has let this go for a long time. If we have to start on a local level, that's where we should start and I think that's a big benefit to everybody in this area."

The seminar for area businesses is being held November 13th, at 7 pm, in the Mason High School auditorium. Authorities in Deerfield Township are trying to deal with similar issues. Officials there recently passed a resolution that calls for fines up to one thousand dollars a day be levied against any business that employs illegals. ... c772afa7c1