A new proposal would require Virginia sheriffs and jail administrators to initiate deportation proceedings against suspected illegal immigrants.
The proposal was announced on Tuesday by the State Crime Commission's Illegal Immigration Task Force.
It would force jail officials to begin the deportation process. That's instead of waiting for federal immigration agents to decide whether to take custody of the suspect.
The proposal would need General Assembly approval.
Only a handful of state sheriffs departments participate in a voluntary federal program that trains deputies to recognize illegal immigrants and initiate the deportation process.
The plan announced on Wednesday would make that program mandatory for every jail in the state.