A bill that would allow illegal immigrants in Illinois to
obtain driver’s licenses has been approved by a committee and is awaiting
preliminary approval on the full House floor.
The bill, HB0129, introduced by Rep. Ed Acevedo, D-Chicago,
would compel the secretary of state to issue driver’s licenses to immigrants who are ineligible for a
Social Security number if they meet other specific requirements.
The Executive Committee of the Illinois House gave its stamp
of approval to the measure March 9 on an 8-3 vote. It is now on the House
floor, awaiting discussion there before a final vote.
Under the bill,
illegal immigrants seeking driver’s licenses would be required to provide:
- A taxpayer identification number;
- An affidavit saying that they
will file to become permanent residents;
- A current passport;
- A foreign birth certificate; and
- A photograph and digital
There would be several differences between the licenses
issued under the bill and other Illinois driver’s licenses. Those issued under
the bill would be required to be visually different from other Illinois
driver’s licenses and there would be an extra fee for them that would be used
to pay for extra processing required for illegal immigrants’ licenses.
Like other drivers, immigrants who received the licenses
would have to obtain valid insurance to stay on the road.
Those who receive licenses under the bill would not be
eligible for commercial driver’s licenses.