NCDOT, DMV Announce New Licensing Standards
Posted October 8, 2001 2:36 a.m. EDT
RALEIGH — North Carolina is known as a state where it is easy to get a driver's license, but that will soon change.
N.C. Department of Transportation
N.C. Division of Motor Vehicles
say that hundreds of people are getting a North Carolina driver's license illegally. They say it is now time for tougher standards.
"We think there have been some flaws in the past in our system and we're addressing these issues, because with the terrorism efforts of last month, it's time to make a change," says Lyndo Tippett, N.C. Transportation Secretary.
Currently, all a person has to do to get a license is pass a driving test and provide an address that is not double-checked.
Starting November 1, first-time driver's license applicants will be required to show a government or business document that proves they live in North Carolina. Those documents include a tax or bank statement, a utility bill, an insurance policy, a computer-generated check stub or immigration papers.
The DMV says that even with the new rules, no applicant will be challenged about his or her immigration status.
"These rules aren't meant for the average guy that's just trying to get his license. It's for people who come to us with a fraudulent intent," says Tippett.
John Bodie, the president of the American Civil Liberties Union of North Carolina, says he has no trouble with the changes as long as the new rules do not single anyone out by race, religion or nationality.
The new licensing laws were set for January, however this latest effort puts tougher laws in place sooner.