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Brown to approve driver's permits for immigrants in U.S. illegally

October 02, 2013|By Patrick McGreevy
  • Gov. Jerry Brown speaks at a meeting of the trustees of the California State University system in Long Beach.
Gov. Jerry Brown speaks at a meeting of the trustees of the California State… (Reed Saxon / Associated…)

SACRAMENTO -- Gov. Jerry Brown on Thursday will hold signing ceremonies in Los Angeles and Fresno to approve AB 60, which will allow people in the country illegally to receive a permit to legally drive in California, his office announced Wednesday.

Brown will join immigrant rights advocates, community leaders, law enforcement officials and local lawmakers in the ceremonies to sign the bill, which the announcement said will “enable millions more Californians to legally drive on the state’s roadways.”

The bill by Assemblyman Luis Alejo (D-Watsonville) was changed at Brown’s request to meet requirements of the federal Department of Homeland Security, including a distinguishing notation of DP, for driving privilege, on the permits, instead of the normal DL, for driver's license.

A notice on the cards will say: “This card is not acceptable for official federal purposes. This license is issued only as a license to drive a motor vehicle. It does not establish eligibility for employment, voter registration, or public benefits." 

The DMV is given until no later than Jan. 1, 2015, to develop a process for accepting alternative documentation, but Alejo said officials with the agency told him they may be able to begin issuing the licenses in September or October of 2014.

"This is historic not only for the millions of immigrant families that will benefit but it also puts California in the lead in terms of integrating our immigrant families," Alejo said Wednesday.

Brown last year signed a bill that provided driver’s licenses to a smaller group of young immigrants who have received a federal work permit under a deferral program created by the Obama administration.

Brown’s office said the governor will hold a morning signing ceremony Thursday on the south lawn of Los Angeles City Hall and an afternoon ceremony at Fresno City College.


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