100 Licenses Granted in Wake of Immigrant Policy

(Gazette file photo)

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By Aaron Hepker

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Within a week of Iowa officials declaring in January that driver's licenses would be granted to young illegal immigrants granted temporary residency, about 100 new licenses and identification cards had been issued.

The state Department of Transportation says that those licenses and cards were granted between Jan. 23 and Jan. 31. Another 40 licenses issued to these temporary residents before the ban was announced in December were not revoked.

After the federal government announced last month that those who qualify for President Barack Obama's deferred-action program should be considered legal residents, state officials reversed course and decided to issue licenses to those young people.

Immigration activists say more licenses will likely be issued as people are accepted into the deferred-action program, a process that can take months.

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