Assemblyman Pete Lopez (R,C,I – Schoharie) today joined Minority Leader James Tedisco (R,C,I – Schenectady-Saratoga) and other members of his conference in introducing the “County Clerks Protection Act.”
The act will defend county clerks who have taken a stand against Governor Spitzer’s illegal actions. Spitzer has threatened to sue county clerks who refuse to implement his plan to give driver’s licenses to illegal aliens. This plan would protect not only county clerks, but the taxpayers who would be forced to pay the costs associated with the legal action as well.
“Having served as a county clerk, I understand the implications of Governor Spitzer’s plan, and I am thankful for the strong support that county clerks have shown in opposition to this plan,” said Lopez. “It is imperative that we protect them as they work to uphold the Constitution and best interests of New Yorkers.”
Spitzer’s plan is in direct violation of Section 502, subsection 1 of the Vehicle and Traffic Law, which states that a Social Security number must be provided in order to obtain a New York driver’s license.
“The basis of the concern is two-fold. First, that the DMV policy runs contrary to existing state law. Pressuring county clerks to uphold this DMV policy, which in and of itself undermines existing state statutes, is wholly inappropriate,” said Lopez. “And second, the very process that was followed to establish this program undermines the basic framework of our government. It excluded the general public and the Governor’s partners, the State Legislature. It is for these reasons that this policy must be rescinded.”