House Committee Approves Drivers Licenses for Illegal Immigrants

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Illegal immigrants who want a license to drive in Illinois are getting another chance in the state Legislature.

The House Executive Committee voted 10 to 2 Wednesday to allow qualified immigrants who aren't U.S. citizens to get special Illinois driver's licenses.

The state Senate rejected a similar idea last year amid security concerns, but advocates say the new version includes precautions such as mandatory fingerprinting and a distinctive appearance of the license to promote safety.

They contend that many illegal immigrants already drive and the change would improve road safety by making sure they get training and have insurance.

The bill now heads to the full House, where its sponsor says he will make additional safeguards to win votes later in the spring.