Rensselaer County fights back against law allowing drivers' licenses for undocumented immigrants

June 20, 2019 05:05 PM

Rensselaer County officials are fighting back against the recently-enacted Green Light Bill. It allows undocumented immigrants to obtain New York State Drivers' Licenses.

Rensselaer County Clerk Frank Merola and County Executive Steve McLaughlin say the law is a travesty, and are taking steps to file a lawsuit to block it.

"I think the law is unconstitutional. It's not philosophical. My wife is a naturalized citizen, so I'm not anti-immigrant, but I also say that my son is a police officer. I think for law enforcement, it's much better for them to know if someone is in this country illegally, and if you give them a license that looks like your license or my license, they would never know the difference," Merola said.

Merola says the county plans to detour the undocumented to the Albany DMV to get a license if they don't have proper identification.

The two officials have reached out to other nearby counties about joining in the lawsuit.

The Green Light Bill takes effect December 16.


WNYT Staff

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