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  1. #1
    Senior Member Ratbstard's Avatar
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    Iowa DOT: No Licenses For Illegal Immigrants

    Iowa DOT: No Licenses For Illegal Immigrants

    kcrg.com
    By James Q. Lynch, Reporter
    Story Created: Dec 27, 2012 at 11:50 AM CST

    [IMG]http://media.kcrg.com/images/470*264/iowadriverslicense.jpg[/IMG]
    Sample Iowa driver's licenses. (Gazette file photo)

    CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa – After a review of Iowa law, the Iowa Department of Transportation will cease issuing driver’s licenses to young illegal immigrants eligible to work in this country under an Obama administration deferred prosecution policy.

    The department has issued at least one driver’s license and one non-operator’s ID since President Obama announced his Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals. Obama changed federal policy in June to let certain illegal immigrants apply for a temporary work permit if they were brought to the country as children.

    However, after reviewing the memorandum issued by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security on the deferred prosecution of illegal immigrants as it relates to Iowa law, the DOT concluded it did not have authority to issue those documents, DOT Director Paul Trombino III said this morning.

    Trombino explained that a memorandum issued by the does not change driver’s license procedures.

    “That’s a state issue, and from policy standpoint, we administer the policy made in the (Iowa) Capitol,” he said.

    The DOT announcement was in response to a letter from the ACLU-Iowa asking the department to issues documents to young illegal immigrants who received deferred status under the Obama policy.

    The department will formally respond to ACLU-Iowa later today, Trombino said.

    The DOT policy does not affect foreign nationals who are authorized to work in this country, Trombino said.

    “In this case, as we reviewed Iowa Code, we determined that deferred status doesn’t give illegal immigrants legal status,” he said. “It’s just deferring any action.”

    Iowa DOT: No Licenses For Illegal Immigrants | KCRG-TV9 | Cedar Rapids, Iowa News, Sports, and Weather | Local News
    Last edited by Ratbstard; 12-27-2012 at 06:44 PM.
    If a man sneaks into your home he is a burglar, not an undocumented tenant you must provide for!

  2. #2
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    Iowa DOT won’t issue driver’s licenses to illegal immigrants granted deferred action

    Iowa DOT won’t issue driver’s licenses to illegal immigrants granted deferred action

    desmoinesregister.com
    8:36 AM, Dec 27, 2012
    by William Petroski


    Omar Del Jesus Mex Valle of Denison — sitting with his mother, Rosa Valle, 1-year-old nephew D’Angelo Mex, and sister Yuliana Mex — has already received an Iowa driver’s license, but DOT officials say they will inform him his license is not valid in the wake of Thursday’s decision. He is originally from Mexico.

    The Iowa Department of Transportation announced Thursday it will not issue driver’s licenses or state identification cards to illegal immigrants granted deferred action for childhood arrival status by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.

    The decision affects almost 5,000 young Iowa immigrants, most of whom are of Mexican heritage.

    DOT officials said the decision was based on guidelines described by U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano in a memorandum issued June 15. The immigrants were brought to the country illegally when they were children.

    “The Iowa DOT understands the exercising of this prosecutorial discretion by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security does not grant lawful status or a lawful immigration path to persons granted Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival status,” DOT officials said in a statement. “Rather, it is prosecutorial discretion extended in a blanket fashion to persons who are not lawfully authorized to be present in the United States.”

    Iowa DOT Director Paul Trombino said in an interview Thursday that his agency made the decision after an extensive review was conducted in consultation with Gov. Terry Branstad’s office. He said that Iowa law says that a driver’s license or nonoperator ID card shall only be issued to a foreign national authorized to be present in the United States. Therefore, the Iowa DOT does not have the legal authority under current Iowa law to issue a driver’s license or nonoperator ID card to a person granted Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals status, he said.

    Trombino said he is aware of only one driver’s license and one state ID card that were incorrectly issued by the DOT to illegal immigrants under the federal deferred action program, although he acknowledged there might be others. In each case, DOT staff will directly contact the individuals and will inform them their license or state ID card is not valid, he added.

    The DOT’s statement came in response to a letter sent in October by the Iowa Chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union which asked whether the state would grant driver’s licenses to immigrants granted deferred action status by the federal government. The U.S. Department of Homeland Security has said each state can determine whether to issue licenses or extend other benefits to young immigrants who qualify for the deferred status.

    Omar Del Jesus Mex Valle, 24, of Denison, a native of Campeche on Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula, was granted deferred action by the federal government in October. He told the Des Moines Register on Thursday that within about a week after he was approved for the federal status he was issued an Iowa DOT driver’s license after passing a written exam and a behind-the-wheel test.

    Now he faces the imminent loss of his Iowa driver’s license.

    “”Oh, my gosh! I already have it,” he said. “I hope they don’t take it from me. I need it to go to my job, and to do stuff for my family.”

    He came to Iowa nine years ago in the middle of a cold and snowy Iowa winter. His parents had arrived five years earlier as undocumented immigrants to secure jobs and stability for their three children in Denison.

    Randall Wilson, the Iowa ACLU’s legal director, said today he was surprised by the Iowa DOT’s decision. The American Civil Liberties Union believes that state officials should be granting driver’s licenses and state ID cards to these immigrants, he said.

    “It seems to me they are arguing about angels dancing on the head of a pin here. These people have been granted status to stay in the United States for a period of time, and whether you want to call it illegal, legal or indeterminate, it doesn’t matter. They are here, so this issue needs to be addressed, either legislatively or in the courts,” Wilson said.

    The ACLU and others have already filed lawsuits in Michigan and Arizona challenging state policies that deny driver’s licenses to undocumented young people whom the federal government has allowed to work and stay in the country.

    Sandra Sanchez, a U.S. citizen and native of Mexico who heads an immigrant advocacy program for the American Friends Services Committee in Des Moines, was sharply critical of the DOT’s decision, calling it misguided.

    “In my opinion, this was either plain ignorance or plain politics, and it is not fair to play politics with these kinds of people,” Sanchez said. “We have already invested in their education. Why not give them the opportunity to fully integrate into our community so they can contribute back? You need a car to go to school, to go to work in Iowa. What are they thinking?”

    Loris Chesser, a Des Moines immigration lawyer, said she was disappointed in the DOT’s decision, saying she believes state officials were wrong in their legal interpretation.

    “How am I not authorized to be present if I turn myself in to the federal government; they have given me a work permisssion; they will let me travel and then come back? I don’t see how you can say that is not authorized to be present,” Chesser said.

    Tim Albrecht, Gov. Terry Branstad’s spokesman, said the governor believes state officials should always follow Iowa law. “Should the Legislature wish to make changes, the governor will review their proposals and would carefully consider any legislation that arrived at his desk,” Albrecht said.

    Iowa House Speaker Kraig Paulsen, R-Hiawatha, said Thursday he doesn’t expect the House to consider legislation regarding the issue when state lawmakers convene in January for their 2013 session.

    “I don’t see any scenario where we give driver’s licenses to people who are here illegally,” Paulsen said.

    Sen. Robert Hogg, D-Cedar Rapids, a lawyer who will chair the Iowa Senate Judiciary Committee when the Iowa Legislature, said he also had no immediate plans to pursue the issue of driver’s licenses for young illegal immigrants.

    “Advocates are obviously free to make the case if they think something should be done, and I will be open-minded and listen,” Hogg said. “I believe we ought to be welcoming, and it is pretty hard to blame the kids who are brought here, but this was not something that I had on my agenda.”

    President Barack Obama announced plans in June for a two-year work permit program for young immigrants, many of whom were brought to the U.S. illegally by their parents as children. About 1.7 million immigrants nationwide under 30. including nearly 5,000 in Iowa – most of them Mexican – are expected to meet the policy’s age, education and criminal history conditions, according to data from the American Immigration Council in Washington, D.C. There are an estimated 11 million illegal immigrants living in the U.S.

    Obama announced the measure, called Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, as he ramped up his reelection campaign earlier this year. The president had angered some Latinos by deporting an estimated 1.2 million people over the past three years.

    Two top Iowa Republicans, Sen. Chuck Grassley and Rep. Steve King, have blasted Obama’s move for deferred action as a serious overreach of executive authority. King’s 4th Congressional District is home to the most immigrants who could benefit from the program, according to the American Immigration Council.

    According to Stateline, a news service of The Pew Center on the States, illegal immigrants who qualify for the federal Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program can qualify for driver’s licenses in 17 states, including Illinois and Wisconsin. Officials have announced they are not eligible in six states, including Nebraska and Kansas.

    Three states – Washington, New Mexico and Utah – allow undocumented immigrants to obtain driver’s licenses because their laws do not require proof of citizenship or legal residence.

    Iowa DOT Director Trombino said the fact that some states are issuing driver’s licenses to illegal immigrants and some states are not reflects the fact that laws regarding driver’s licenses vary significantly from state to state.

    Iowa DOT won’t issue driver’s licenses to illegal immigrants granted deferred action | Des Moines Register Staff Blogs
    If a man sneaks into your home he is a burglar, not an undocumented tenant you must provide for!

  3. #3
    Senior Member Ratbstard's Avatar
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    If a man sneaks into your home he is a burglar, not an undocumented tenant you must provide for!

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