Sup. Sylvia Ortiz-Velez
Press Release

Board of Supervisors Endorses Expanded Access to Driver’s Licenses for Undocumented Immigrants

"Expanding access to driver's licenses will make the roads safer for everyone."

By - Mar 21st, 2019 11:59 am

MILWAUKEE –  The Board of Supervisors adopted (14-2) a proposal from Supervisor Sylvia Ortiz-Velez to endorse portions of Governor Tony Evers‘ budget that would restore full access to driver’s licenses for all Wisconsin residents, regardless of immigration status.

Supervisor Ortiz-Velez stressed the safety benefits of expanding access to driver’s licenses.

“Expanding access to driver’s licenses will make the roads safer for everyone. When California, New Mexico, and Utah allowed undocumented immigrants to have access to driver’s licenses it increased the number of insured vehicles on the roads, helped to reduce the number of accidents, and assisted law enforcement’s ability to respond to accidents because individuals who were involved stayed on the scene. I want to thank my constituents and member of the community who spoke out on this issue, especially Christine Neumann-Ortiz and the members of Voces de la Frontera,” said Ortiz-Velez.

The adopted resolution states that removing restrictions to driver’s license access would:

  • Facilitate undocumented immigrants ability to reach more distant employers;
  • Improve overall driver safety by allowing undocumented immigrants to undergo the requisite tests to obtain a license;
  • Lower insurance premiums statewide by approximately $16 million via enlarging the pool of insured persons by approximately 28,000; and
  • Raise an additional $2 million toward state transportation objectives from the annual vehicle registration fee.

The adopted resolution will be forwarded to the offices of the Governor, the Lieutenant Governor, the Speaker of the Assembly, the Assembly Minority Leader, the Senate Majority Leader, the Senate Minority Leader, and any state legislator who represents all or part of Milwaukee County.

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