Utah legislators were in Nevada’s state capitol today. They were lending their expertise on how they have handled their state's driver privilege card for undocumented drivers. Nevada has bill patterned after Utah, and a hearing was packed with people in support of this legislation. News 3's Sandra Gonzalez has the story.
LAS VEGAS -- Nevada legislators heard from Utah legislators about that state’s driver privilege card. Nevada’s Transportation Committee held a hearing about Senate bill 303, a proposed driver privilege card that would give permission to undocumented residents to drive in the state.
Barbara Silva needed a ride to the Grant Sawyer building to attend the hearing that was video-conferenced between Carson City and Las Vegas. She is afraid to drive.
“…because the police stopped me and I’m being scared, afraid because I don't have a license for my work,” Silva said.
She was one of about 100 people who attended the hearing in Las Vegas. They were there to hear from the Utah legislators and to show support for the proposed bill. Utah State Senator Curtis Bramble said a majority of people with the driver privilege card carry car insurance.
“The folks who come forward are not the criminal element. They are not the folks that law enforcement would be seeking out. They are the folks who are trying to have insurance and trying to do all they can once you get past the immigration status,” Bramble said.
He strongly suggested the driver privilege card also look different from the driver’s license, since it is not an official identification. For instance you could not use it for travel by air.
One by one, people spoke to legislators showing how they backed SB-303.
“There would be a major elimination of court cases, of astronomical bills that these people cannot pay. They don't want to be criminals,” said Esperanza Montelongo.
And as each person spoke in favor, the crowd in Las Vegas quietly waved their hands instead of clapping.
“Put it this way: it's going to bring more calm to those family members. let's say a father has a one year old and its winter and its really cold and so they want to go buy medication for the kid, sometimes they think twice to go buy the medication because they can be stopped by the police,” said Daniel Ramos.
“They will drive with more confidence and there will be less hit and run incidents as well,” said Alan Aleman.
While they are still tweaking the bill, not one person spoke out against it either in Las Vegas or in Carson City.