senate Bill S4408

2011-2012 Legislative Session

Relates to the requirements of proof for certain licenses

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Archive: Last Bill Status - In Committee


  • Introduced
  • In Committee
  • On Floor Calendar
    • Passed Senate
    • Passed Assembly
  • Delivered to Governor
  • Signed/Vetoed by Governor

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Assembly Actions - Lowercase
Senate Actions - UPPERCASE
Jan 04, 2012 referred to transportation
Apr 04, 2011 referred to transportation

S4408 - Bill Details

Current Committee:
Law Section:
Vehicle and Traffic Law
Laws Affected:
Amd §§490 & 502, V & T L
Versions Introduced in 2009-2010 Legislative Session:
S3669

S4408 - Bill Texts

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Relates to the requirements of proof for certain licenses.

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BILL NUMBER:S4408

TITLE OF BILL:

An act
to amend the vehicle and traffic law, in relation to requirements of
proof for certain licenses

PURPOSE OR GENERAL IDEA OF BILL:

Require the commissioner of the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV)
to obtain certain proof from any applicant for a driver's license
or nondriver identification card who cannot provide a social security
number that they are ineligible for such social security number.

SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS:

Section one of the bill amends subparagraph (i) of paragraph (a)
of subdivision 3 of §490 of the Vehicle and Traffic Law to require
the commissioner to obtain proof from any applicant for a nondriver
identification card who cannot provide a social security number that
they are ineligible for such social security number. This proof
shall be any documents issued by the United States Department of
Homeland Security, which specify that the applicant is legally
not eligible for a social security number.

Section two of the bill amends subdivision 1 of §502 of the
Vehicle and Traffic Law to require the commissioner to obtain
proof from any applicant for a driver's license who cannot provide
a social security number that they are ineligible for such social
security number. This proof shall be documents issued by the
United States Department of Homeland Security, which specify
that the applicant is legally not eligible for a social security
number.

Section three of the bill amends paragraph (a) of subdivision 6 of
502 of the Vehicle and Traffic Law to require the commissioner to
obtain proof from any applicant for renewal of a driver's license who
cannot provide a social security number that they are legally
ineligible for such social security number. This proof shall be
documents issued by the United States Department of Homeland Security,
which specify that the applicant is legally not eligible for a social
security number.

JUSTIFICATION:

The New York State Department of Motor Vehicles has long required
driver's license applicants who don't have Social Security numbers to
submit a Social Security Administration (SSA) letter stating the
person wasn't eligible to work in the US and so wasn't issued a
Social Security number, but was present in the country legally. On
September 6, 2001, the Commissioner further clarified the
Department's requirements making immigrants provide more proof. In
addition to the SSA letter, applicants who do not have a SSN would
be required to submit the DHS documents used to obtain the SSA
letter. The Department then pursued the formal State Administrative


Procedure Act process to formally adopt this procedure as Department
regulation.

The new rule instituted five days before terrorists attacked the
World Trade Center requires
driver's license applicant to provide federal immigration documents
to prove they are in the country legally. Some of the September 11
hijackers had obtained driver's licenses. Seven of the terrorists
exploited loopholes in other states that allowed people to obtain
driver's licenses and 10 cards by submitting sworn statements
instead of proof of residency or identity.

A lawsuit was filed in 2004, after the state started cracking down.
Advocates for illegal aliens claimed the crackdown was expected to
result in the loss of driver's licenses for 300,000 illegal aliens.

In 2005, a state Supreme Court justice in Manhattan ordered the state
to stop seizing the driver's licenses of immigrants without Social
Security cards, arguing in part that the DMV couldn't enforce
immigration law.
But in July 2006, the appellate division overturned that ruling and
allowed the state to require that immigrants prove they are in the
United States legally to get a driver's license. The DMV defended the
rules, saying they were put in place to combat fraud and terrorism.

The Court of Appeals ruled June 7, 2007, by a vote of 5-2 that DMV
regulations are constitutional. The Court further upheld regulations
that provide that the only exception to this rule is if the applicant
is ineligible to obtain such a number as determined by immigration
documents issued by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). The
case is

CUBAS V. MARTINEZ, (2007 NY Slip Op 04723).

The decision is to be welcomed. Preventing the issuance of drivers'
licenses to individuals who cannot establish their identity and legal
presence deters not only fraudulent use but also the employ of such
documentation as needed proof to obtain other "legal" credentials or
to ease travel, purchase goods and/or perform other acts with
illegal or terrorist inspired intentions.

The Executive and new Commissioner have rescinded this policy in
violation of the State Administrative Procedure Act, the Vehicle and
Traffic Law and common sense. Utilizing an Automobile Association of
America (AAA) study completed in 2003, based on 10 year old data, the
Executive claims that New York roads will be safer and New York car
insurance premiums will go down. These claims do not hold up under
scrutiny, and in fact, the AAA study contained no data from New York.

As was consistently revealed in Senate hearings, the driver's license
is a "gateway credential", a "breeder document". A document which
opens the door to other legitimate documents which will enable
illegal aliens to imbed themselves in New York. Access to legal
identification credentials allow illegal aliens and those who would
do our nation and state harm to hide in plain site.


Since the processing and verification of foreign documents will now be
integral to the drivers license application procedure, New York will
be forced to acquire millions of dollars of new equipment and hire
and train hundreds of new Motor Vehicle employees. This equipment has
not been thoroughly tested nor certified.

This legislation is necessary to prevent New York from voluntarily
disarming itself in the battle to protect its citizens from those who
would come to our shores with the intention of doing us harm. The
rationale for this policy change does not withstand close examination
and any potential benefits are far outweighed by the likely
consequences.

LEGISLATIVE HISTORY:

2009-10: S.3669 Transportation Cmte.
2008: S.6502 Transportation Cmte./A.9636 Transportation Cmte.

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS:

None.

EFFECTIVE DATE:

This act shall take effect immediately.

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                    S T A T E   O F   N E W   Y O R K
________________________________________________________________________

                                  4408

                       2011-2012 Regular Sessions

                            I N  S E N A T E

                              April 4, 2011
                               ___________

Introduced  by Sen. FLANAGAN -- read twice and ordered printed, and when
  printed to be committed to the Committee on Transportation

AN ACT to amend the vehicle and traffic law, in relation to requirements
  of proof for certain licenses

  THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND  ASSEM-
BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:

  Section  1.  Subparagraph  (i)  of  paragraph  (a) of subdivision 3 of
section 490 of the vehicle and traffic law, as amended by chapter 235 of
the laws of 2002, is amended to read as follows:
  (i) The commissioner shall upon submission of an appropriate  applica-
tion,  upon payment of the prescribed fee, and upon being satisfied that
the person described is the applicant and that such applicant meets  the
requirements set forth in subdivision two of this section, issue to such
applicant  a  nontransferable  identification  card.    In addition, the
commissioner also shall require that an applicant for an  identification
card  or  renewal  thereof provide his or her social security number, OR
PROVIDE PROOF THAT HE OR SHE IS  NOT  ELIGIBLE  FOR  A  SOCIAL  SECURITY
NUMBER.  SUCH  PROOF MAY INCLUDE ANY DOCUMENTS SUBMITTED BY AN APPLICANT
TO THE UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY FOR THE PURPOSE  OF
DETERMINING WHETHER SUCH APPLICANT IS ELIGIBLE TO RECEIVE A SOCIAL SECU-
RITY NUMBER.
  S  2.  Subdivision 1 of section 502 of the vehicle and traffic law, as
amended by chapter 639 of the laws  of  2006,  is  amended  to  read  as
follows:
  1.  Application for license.  Application for a driver's license shall
be made to the commissioner.  The fee prescribed by law may be submitted
with such application. The applicant shall furnish such proof of identi-
ty, age, and fitness as may be required by the commissioner. The commis-
sioner may also provide that the application procedure shall include the
taking of a photo image or images of the applicant  in  accordance  with
rules  and  regulations prescribed by the commissioner. In addition, the

 EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                      [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                           LBD10636-01-1

S. 4408                             2

commissioner [also] shall require that the applicant provide his or  her
social  security  number  [and],  OR PROVIDE PROOF THAT HE OR SHE IS NOT
ELIGIBLE FOR A SOCIAL SECURITY NUMBER. SUCH PROOF MAY INCLUDE ANY  DOCU-
MENTS SUBMITTED BY AN APPLICANT TO THE UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF HOME-
LAND  SECURITY  FOR THE PURPOSE OF DETERMINING WHETHER SUCH APPLICANT IS
ELIGIBLE TO RECEIVE A SOCIAL SECURITY  NUMBER.  THE  COMMISSIONER  SHALL
ALSO provide space on the application so that the applicant may register
in  the  New  York  state  organ and tissue donor registry under section
forty-three hundred ten of the public health law. In addition, an appli-
cant for a commercial driver's license who  will  operate  a  commercial
motor  vehicle  in interstate commerce shall certify that such applicant
meets the requirements to operate a commercial  motor  vehicle,  as  set
forth  in  public  law  99-570,  title  XII, and title 49 of the code of
federal regulations, and  all  regulations  promulgated  by  the  United
States  secretary of transportation under the hazardous materials trans-
portation act. Upon a determination that  the  holder  of  a  commercial
driver's  license  has  made  any  false  statement, with respect to the
application  for  such  license,  the  commissioner  shall  revoke  such
license.
  S  3. Paragraph (a) of subdivision 6 of section 502 of the vehicle and
traffic law, as amended by section 3 of part K of chapter 59 of the laws
of 2009, is amended to read as follows:
  (a) A license issued pursuant to  subdivision  five  of  this  section
shall  be valid until the expiration date contained thereon, unless such
license is suspended, revoked or cancelled. Such license may be  renewed
by  submission of an application for renewal, the fee prescribed by law,
proofs of prior licensing, fitness and acceptable vision  prescribed  by
the  commissioner,  AND  the applicant's social security number[, and if
required by the commissioner] OR PROVIDE PROOF THAT HE  OR  SHE  IS  NOT
ELIGIBLE  FOR A SOCIAL SECURITY NUMBER. SUCH PROOF MAY INCLUDE ANY DOCU-
MENTS SUBMITTED BY AN APPLICANT TO THE UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF HOME-
LAND SECURITY FOR THE PURPOSE OF DETERMINING WHETHER SUCH  APPLICANT  IS
ELIGIBLE  TO RECEIVE A SOCIAL SECURITY NUMBER. THE COMMISSIONER MAY ALSO
REQUIRE SUBMISSION OF a photo image of the applicant in such numbers and
form as the commissioner shall prescribe.  In addition, an applicant for
renewal of a license containing a hazardous material  endorsement  shall
pass  an examination to retain such endorsement. The commissioner shall,
with respect to the renewal of a hazardous materials endorsement, comply
with the requirements  imposed  upon  states  by  sections  383.141  and
1572.13  of  title  49  of the code of federal regulations. A renewal of
such license shall be issued by the commissioner upon approval  of  such
application, except that no such license shall be issued if its issuance
would  be  inconsistent  with  the  provisions  of  section five hundred
sixteen of this title, and except that the commissioner  may  refuse  to
renew  such  license if the applicant is the holder of a currently valid
or renewable license to drive issued by another state or foreign country
unless the applicant surrenders such license.
  S 4. This act shall take effect immediately.

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