AUSTIN, Texas — The Texas Senate is holding a public hearing on an immigration bill that bans police agencies from adopting policies that bar officers from asking people they detain whether they are in the country legally.

Gov. Rick Perry last week added immigration measures to the call of the special session last week. Public testimony at Monday's hearing is expected to last several hours.

The so-called sanctuary cities bill is fiercely opposed by Senate Democrats, who say it will lead to harassment of Latinos.

Sen. Tommy Williams, R-Houston, says police take an oath to uphold the state and federal constitutions and asking about citizenship status is good public policy.

Democrats were able to block the bill in the regular sessions.