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Malta, Dinolfo Oppose Driver Licenses for Illegal Immigrants

Thu, Sep 27 2007

Rochester -- Expressing his outrage and disbelief, Monroe County Legislator Dave Malta announced today that he will introduce legislation that will bar the Monroe County Clerk's Office from spending County taxpayer dollars to issue New York State Driver Licenses to illegal immigrants. County Clerk Cheryl Dinolfo, who is responsible for providing local DMV services, joined Malta in making the announcement and stated her support for his proposal. The two joined together in response to the State DMV announcement that it will no longer require applicants for a driver license to possess a valid Social Security Number, opening the door for an estimated 500,000 illegal immigrants in New York to obtain driver licenses identical to those held by legal residents.
 
Incredibly, the State DMV edict removes an important safeguard instituted in response to 9/11 attacks in New York.
 
"This State DMV policy would give illegal immigrants the same exact license that you and I have and would allow them to rent vehicles, fly in planes and open bank accounts all actions done by terrorists of 9/11. It is outrageous that the State DMV would threaten our public safety in this manner," said County Legislator Dave Malta.
 
Both Malta and Dinolfo expressed concerns that the new policy would weaken public safety and harm our economy by attracting additional illegal immigrants to New York. In addition, they were alarmed by the fact an illegal immigrant with a driver license could fly on commercial airplanes.
 
"State DMV is asking my office to help illegal immigrants break the law. As the grandchild of immigrants who came to this country legally, I find that wrong and offensive. By issuing driver licenses to illegal immigrants we are rewarding those who flaunt our laws at the expense of who respect and follow them," said County Clerk Cheryl Dinolfo. "Because of this policy New York will make our State a haven for potential terrorists, attract thousands of additional illegal immigrants, and further strain our State's economy. I cannot in good conscience support this action. Therefore, I ask the State DMV to rescind its decision, and if they refuse, I ask the full County Legislature to support Dave Malta's proposal."
 
County Clerk Dinolfo estimates that there are nearly 3,800 illegal immigrants in Monroe County that would be eligible for driver's licenses under the State DMV's new rules. That figure is based on State DMV estimates.