Since stiffer Colorado immigration laws went into effect earlier this year, the level of fear has risen among those in the local construction industry who worry they could be penalized for illegal immigrants on the job site, said Dave Kooks, a custom home builder and president of the Summit Home Builders Association.

“For me, as a builder who subcontracts a lot of work, I realize that certainly I’m more exposed to the danger of being criminally prosecuted for having unknowingly hired illegal immigrants through a subcontractor, and that would be terrible — but it’s not going to strip me of my livelihood,” Kooks said, adding that some small local subcontractors could lose everything in a similar situation.