House Panel Shelves Latest Immigrant License Bill

Feb 27, 2013

A House committee has blocked a proposal backed by Republican Gov. Susana Martinez to provide temporary driver's licenses to certain immigrant youths but stop the state from granting licenses to other immigrants who illegally came to the country.

The Labor and Human Resources Committee on Tuesday voted 5-4 along party lines to table a bill by GOP Rep. Paul Pacheco of Albuquerque. Republicans wanted to advance the bill to another committee.

Supporters described the proposal as a compromise from previous efforts to stop licenses for all illegal immigrants.

The proposal would grant temporary licenses, which couldn't be used to board airliners, to immigrants covered by a federal policy deferring deportation. They can obtain a traditional driver's license currently.

Democratic Majority Leader Rick Miera disagreed that the bill was a compromise.