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Politics and Government

Colorado slated to offer immigrant driver’s licenses at 11 offices after governor signs bill expanding program

Polis signed Senate Bill 139 on Tuesday, which aims to end the long backlogs immigrant applicants faced to get a license under the five-year-old program

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A sample of a Colorado driver’s license for someone living in the country illegally. (Handout)

Colorado will offer driver’s licenses to immigrants living in the U.S. illegally at as many as 11 locations — up from four — across the state under a bill Gov. Jared Polis signed on Tuesday expanding the long-troubled program.

The Colorado Department of Revenue says it will expand the program to its offices in Glenwood Springs, Lamar, Montrose, Pueblo, Alamosa and Sterling. That’s on top of plans to offer licenses in Durango, thanks to an appropriation from the Colorado legislature.

The licenses, which are issued only by appointment, are currently available at Division of Motor Vehicle offices in Lakewood, Colorado Springs, Aurora and Grand Junction.

Polis signed Senate Bill 139 on Tuesday, which aims to end the long backlogs applicants faced to get a license under the 5-year-old program. The governor counts the legislation as one of his biggest accomplishments on behalf of immigrants in his first year in office.

The measure requires the licenses be offered at at least 10 offices across Colorado by July 1, 2020. The program is funded by the higher fees immigrants who can prove they live in Colorado pay to get the licenses.

The legislation is most significant expansion of the program since it was created by the legislature in 2013. Republican opposition to the effort hampered earlier attempts to expand the program.

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