LINCOLN — Iowa officials have issued about 100 driver's licenses and identification cards to young illegal immigrants granted temporary residency, but Nebraska has no plans to issue licenses.
The Iowa Department of Transportation said the driver's licenses and identification cards were issued between Jan. 23 and Jan. 31, within a week of Iowa officials' declaring that the licenses would be granted.
Forty licenses issued last year were not revoked. Those licenses were granted before Iowa policymakers decided in December to deny licenses for such applicants.
After the federal government announced last month that those who qualify for President Barack Obama's deferred-action program should be considered legally present in the country, Iowa officials reversed course and decided to issue licenses to those young people.
The deferrals are being granted to teen and young-adult immigrants whose parents illegally brought them to the United States as children.
In Nebraska, Gov. Dave Heineman announced last summer that the state would not issue driver's licenses to those accepted into the deferred-action program. He said he won't support providing state benefits and services to people who are in the country illegally.
When asked Tuesday if the governor might reconsider his position on the matter, his spokeswoman replied, “We have no updates.”
Nebraska and Arizona are the only two states with a stated policy of denying driver's licenses to young immigrants who have received deferred-action status, according to the National Immigration Law Center.
This report includes material from the Associated Press.
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