Undocumented Immigrants Can Now Obtain a California Drivers License

Governor Jerry Brown had 108 bills to sign or veto on Sunday.


A bill that allows an unspecified number of undocumented immigrants in California to become eligible for driver's licenses was signed by Governor Jerry Brown late Sunday according to a blog posted by Jim Sanders on the Sacramento Bee's Capital Alert website.

The measure, Assembly Bill 2189, was among the final bills Brown for which made decisions on the last day for him to sign or veto measures passed by the Legislature this year.

The bill affects an estimated 400,000 people who are expected to meet the requirements of President Barack Obama's new Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program.

Democratic Assemblyman Gil Cedillo (D-L.A.)has been attempting to pass such legislation for over a decade, saying issuing driver's licenses to undocumented immigrants would enhance public safety.

Opponents have argued that California should be careful in issuing driver's licenses because of their use as identification for other public purposes.

Sanders went on to write that officials of the California Department of Motor Vehicles have already stated that it appears Deferred Action participants will be eligible for driver's licenses. California requires specific documents to be produced to obtain one, however, and those expected to be distributed by the federal program are not on the state's list.

It would apply to fewer than one of every four undocumented immigrants in California, according to Cedillo.

Deferred Action is meant for longtime California residents who came to the United States as undocumented immigrants when they were young and generally have lived productive lives since then.

It applies to undocumented immigrants between the ages of 15 and 31 who came to the United States before age 16 and have lived in this country continuously for the past five years.

Participants must be in school, have graduated from high school or obtained an equivalency certificate, or have been honorably discharged from the U.S. military. They cannot have committed a felony, significant misdemeanor, or three or more misdemeanors.

In other action Sunday:

  • Legislation touted by supporters as a fitting tribute to fallen heroes but ripped by opponents as a costly expansion of public benefits was vetoed.
  • Legislation that would have made it a crime for farmers not to provide adequate shade and water to their field workers was also vetoed.
  • Legislation was killed that was designed to curtail the deportation of undocumented immigrants arrested on minor or non-violent offenses.
  • Rejecting the notion of allowing criminals to become celebrities, Gov. Brown vetoed legislation that would have allowed reporters the right to interview specific state convicts.
  • A $100 million annual tax break for California motion picture companies was extended.
  • Parents who exclude their children from immunization requirements are now required to submit a signed statement that they received information about risks and benefits of vaccines.
  • Juvenile murderers sentenced to life in prison without parole have hope of being released in years to come under legislation signed.

For more news and information, visit Capital Alert.

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Sue Kemp October 01, 2012 at 10:00 PM
Allowing undocumented workers to obtain driver's licenses is a win-win for everybody. You can't get car insurance without a driver's license. People have to drive - to work, to school, to various other important things -- so they'll drive. If they have an accident, without insurance, that's trouble for everyone. I knew an undocumented man a few years ago. Great family man, hard worker, daughter taking piano lessons, your basic American family. Except he was from Mexico. He got into an accident, and I was worried for him. He said, "Not to worry; I got false papers, so I was able to get a driver's license and to get insurance. No one is going to get hurt for this accident." A responsible guy who did the right thing, even though he had to use an illegal means to do so.
Sherice Thomas October 18, 2013 at 03:51 PM
The only way that giving these non-ID purposes IDs to illegal aliens is fair to American citizens (the only group that should matter in these discussions) is if and only if these 'IDs' are easily identifiable as NOT FOR ID PURPOSES/NON-CITIZEN items and are not to be accepted as state IDs which citizens are allowed to acquire. Otherwise, these 'items' will only serve as an open door for other illegal activity (which we all know illegals have no problems committing) such as: voting, securing employment without authorization, other violations... In response to the illegal alien with the large sign that reads: we are workers not criminals, well, sir, yes you are criminals because it is illegal for you to be here, the majority of illegals have made more than one illegal entry into our country making this a felony AND it is criminal for you to be working when we have over 20 million AMERICAN workers who are unemployed and actively looking for work. God will set this all straight in the upcoming now-2-3 years and we won't have this illegal alien invasion problem any longer.


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