Maryland House Panel Votes to Continue Allowing Drivers' Licenses for Undocumented Immigrants

A Maryland House panel approved a measure that would allow undocumented immigrants to continue to obtain and renew driver's licenses.

The bill will now to go a vote in the House, News4's Erika Gonzalez reports.

The state Senate passed the bill Monday in a 29-18 vote.

Maryland law currently allows undocumented immigrants to obtain a second-tier driver's license, but that practice is set to expire unless the General Assembly passes a bill that repeals a 2015 deadline to end the practice.

The limited drivers' licenses have wording indicating they are not for federal use and are not valid for voting ID or for boarding airplanes.

Applicants have to show proof of identification, provide two years of state income tax filings, and pass a written and a driving exam before getting behind the wheel.

Supporters of the measure to be considered on Wednesday say the licenses will make the state's roads safe and would reduce the likelihood of hit-and-run accidents.

Opponents of the legislation argue that the bill could turn Maryland into a haven for undocumented immigrants.

Currently four states grant driver's licenses to undocumented immigrants: New Mexico, Washington, Utah and Illinois.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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