ALBUQUERQUE (AP) — The fate of legislation aimed at bringing New Mexico into compliance with tougher federal identification requirements is now in the hands of the Democratic-led Senate.
A key Senate committee is scheduled Tuesday to hear proposals that lawmakers say would do just that. The differences center on how the state deals with immigrants living in the country illegally who want to lawfully drive in New Mexico.
A version passed by the GOP-controlled House would require residents to get a REAL ID compliant license and allow immigrants to obtain a driver's permit card. Gov. Susana Martinez favors that measure.
Senate Democrats, however, are pushing a proposal that would create a two-tier system, granting REAL ID compliant licenses to those who want them and non-compliant ones to others who don't want to go through the federal requirements. Immigrants in the country illegally would be able to obtain non-compliant licenses.
Another measure introduced late Monday by two key senators, one a Democrat and the other a Republican, would essential combine elements of the two bills for a compromise.