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Posted: 10:51 AM- A special legislative committee will spend the next several months studying the ins and outs of Utah's immigration policy, focusing on the provisions in a comprehensive reform bill.

SB81, which passed the Legislature with a July 2009 implementation date for most of the provisions, penalizes government contractors that employ undocumented immigrants, requires a county sheriff to try to verify the legal status of someone arrested, and requires public benefits providers to try to verify a beneficiary's legal status.

The committee will look at issues such as the legal status of children of undocumented immigrants, crime statistics attributable to the undocumented population, and providing in-state tuition to immigrants.

It also will study provisions of SB81 which allows local law enforcement to help enforce immigration laws and makes it a Class A misdemeanor to harbor or transport undocumented immigrants.

The committee will meet up to eight times in the coming year and consist of seven House members - five Republicans and two Democrats - and four Senators, three Republicans and a Democrat. The membership will be announced in a few days.