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Feds haven't approached state about taking immigrant children

HANOVER — Federal officials have not asked New Hampshire to house illegal immigrant children who have crossed the nation’s southern borders.

“I haven’t received any of those types of requests, but I think it is an appropriate thing for us to consider and discuss,” said Gov. Maggie Hassan on Wednesday. “But certainly I will be consulting with the people of New Hampshire before making any kind of decision.”

Her office said her staff has been in contact with the National Guard, Emergency Management, Health and Human Services and the Department of Corrections — agencies most likely to be involved in taking care of the children — and none has been contacted.

“We are unable to verify any reports that child immigrants have been transferred to New Hampshire,” said the governor’s press secretary William Hinkle. Strafford County Department of Corrections officials said Monday the jail does not house U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement detainees who are minors, or families, but does house adults and has since 2006.

Daniel Modricker, a spokesman for ICE, said earlier there are no facilities in New Hampshire for minor detainees.

Syndicated columnist Michelle Malkin wrote that detainees are being “dumped on” New England and since that time, the New Hampshire Union Leader has received “tips” that detainees are in the state. Recently Connecticut Gov. Dannel Malloy turned down a request from the U.S. General Services Administration to lease a closed facility to house about 2,000 illegal children who are being detained until their cases can be heard.

The influx of illegal children has created a crisis for many southern states along the border with Mexico. President Barack Obama has asked for $3.7 billion to address the problem.

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