Youth brought into this country illegally at a young age will be allowed to apply for a Nebraska driver’s license under a bill passing the Unicameral.
The Unicameral has voted 34-to-9 to allow youth enrolled in the federal Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program to apply for driver’s licenses. The youth are often referred to as DREAMers after the DREAM Act, an immigration reform bill that has failed to make it through Congress.
Justice for Our Neighbors of Nebraska Executive Director Emiliano Lerda says Nebraska’s status as the last state to withhold driver privileges from such youth has hurt the state.
“It was really sad and I think it’s also an illustration that we have a long ways to go as a state to be more welcoming,” Lerda tells reporters. “And being more welcoming is good for everybody. It’s even good for the economy.”
Gov. Pete Ricketts stated during a Capitol news conference on Wednesday that he opposes LB 623 which is sponsored by Sen. Jeremy Nordquist of Omaha. The governor stopped short of saying he would veto it.