Supporters rally for IDs for undocumented residents

Supporters say it will make driving situations safer

Supporters say it will make driving situations safer by reducing the number of drivers behind the wheel.

NORWALK - Eight mayors and Democratic legislative leaders lobbied at the Capitol this morning to push a bill that would issue driver's licenses and ID cards to undocumented immigrants in Connecticut.

Supporters, primarily Democrats, say expanding access to licenses for undocumented residents makes sense on several fronts. Four similar bills failed last month in committee, but legislative leaders say that won't happen this time because of bipartisan support.

They say it will make driving situations safer by reducing the number of drivers behind the wheel without a license. Supporters say that when undocumented residents get into an accident, there is an incentive for them to flee the scene rather than wait for police and risk arrest and possible deportation.

Bridgeport Mayor Bill Finch says the move would help the city's tax base because more cars would be registered. Norwalk Mayor Dick Moccia says he understands that, but has questions about how the law would be enforced.

Supporters say there will be provisions, including requiring immigrants to display a passport from their native country, but more details are still being ironed out. Legislative leaders say it will likely be proposed as an amendment to another bill and possibly brought up for a vote before the end of the current legislative session.
 

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