The controversial issue of immigration, currently at the forefront of the national discourse, was also at the center of local Ithaca politics Monday night when the Town Board voted to endorse Gov. Eliot Spitzer’s (D) plan to provide undocumented immigrants with driver’s licenses. This action is one of the many steps Ithaca has taken in recent months regarding immigrant rights.
On Sept. 21, Spitzer announced the policy change would enable undocumented immigrants to apply for state licenses without providing Social Security numbers. The reform would instead permit foreign passports as valid forms of identification and therefore allow undocumented immigrants to receive licenses. The controversial plan will make New York the eighth state in the nation to have such a policy.