11 months ago by Bryan Nichols
Bill now goes to Gov. Quinn; Rep. Tracy opposed legislation
On the final day of the 97th General Assembly, State Representative Jil Tracy (R-Quincy) voted against a proposal that will allow illegal immigrants in Illinois to obtain driver’s licenses. Senate Bill 957 would create temporary visitor driver’s licenses for illegal immigrants residing in Illinois.
“There are a number of problems I have with a proposal of this nature,” said Rep. Tracy. “Our local law enforcement agencies had a number of concerns with this bill and I believe this proposal will create more problems than it solves.”
SB 957, which has passed the Senate and House, would allow the Secretary of State to issue temporary visitor driver’s licenses to illegal immigrants which would be valid for three years. Applicants would be required to submit a valid, unexpired passport from their country of citizenship and pay a minimum fee of $30. They must also comply with Illinois mandatory insurance requirements.
“Illinois should not be in the business of rewarding illegal immigrants who are breaking state and federal laws. Driving is a privilege, not a right. This will provide an incentive for illegal immigrants to come to our state, which will ultimately result in a further drain of our scarce tax dollars,” said Tracy.
Illinois moved a step closer Tuesday to becoming the next state to allow illegal immigrants to obtain driver's licenses after House lawmakers approved a bill requiring proof of state residency and a photograph.
The House voted 65-46 in favor of the plan, which now goes to Gov. Pat Quinn. Quinn has said he will sign the measure.
Washington and New Mexico currently allow illegal immigrants to obtain licenses, Utah allows permits and Connecticut officials said this week that some young illegal immigrants could apply if they qualify for a federal program. A number of other states are considering proposals.